Friday, October 31, 2008

Good Grief Charlie Brown!

So there you have it.  We were Peanuts characters for Halloween.  I went the homespun route and pieced together most of the costumes from our own closets and the clearance rack at local stores - which made for a more subtle disguise than I might have originally intended.  Owen's was certainly the only stand-alone outfit.  Scott's appearance and mine didn't make much sense to people without him around.  In fact, I could gauge my proximity to Owen just by the level of confusion with which people gazed at me.  When people walked past me and kept staring over their shoulder so long that I thought they might run into a post, I knew I'd let myself get separated from the pack.  

My favorite wrong guess for who Scott was supposed to be?  The hamburglar.   I admit the mask and cape were misleading (I was going for this.) And the absence of the little piano was a near fatal flaw in his costume, but the "I Love Beethoven" pin should have been a great clue that he was Schroeder.  Right?  Well if Scott had to suffer the humiliation of being misidentified, at least he was able to enjoy being right:  "I told you nobody was going to know who I am."

And my favorite comment about my costume?  That I looked like Lady Heather, the dominatrix from CSI.   I aimed for wholesome 1950's cartoon character and landed on Vegas madam instead.  Not a bad miss; I simply helped Lucy put the strip in comic strip.

Owen would like to thank Sarah Elizabeth, Uncle Drew, Laura, and Uncle Tommy & Aunt Charolette for letting him come by to trick-or-treat.  What fun!

Happy Halloween!!!

It just occurred to me that we won't be in our costumes until tonight, so you'll have to wait until tomorrow for the big reveal.  (I'm building this up waaay too much.  Keep in mind these are homemade costumes folks, so manage your expectations!)

Here's a photo of O in his pumpkinmobile to tide you over.  Hope everyone has a spooky All Hallow's Eve!  As Aunt Becky likes to say, "Mmmwahhaahaahaa!!!"  

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Costume Sneak Preview #3

Costume Sneak Preview #2

Costume Sneak Preview #1

If you already know, you'll just have to play along!  Two more clues to come today.  And yes, we all have costumes!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Everyday Owen: One Sarah Elizabeth took

Thanks Sarah Elizabeth & Laura!

In exchange for a measly dinner of whole wheat crust pizza, this fun design duo came over last night and created an art installation out of coffee filters, cupcake papers and thumbtacks on our living room wall.  I just love the whimsy of it!  (Please excuse my pitiful photography.)

This photo was our inspiration.  I saw it on Simple Lovely last month and have been secretly hoping to recreate it ever since.  Then Sarah Elizabeth came to stay with Owen yesterday while I went to buy his birthday gift and I happened to mention to her that I was trying to work up the courage to tackle the project, and she said, "What if I come back tonight and bring Laura?" And tada!

Thanks so much ladies!

p.s.  If Scott asks, tell him you think they look like barnacles, not flowers.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Lookin'-est Baby

We live about 6 blocks from one of the original MTV Real World cast members, and although I'm not a huge pop culture fan (at least not compared to my fabulous sisters!) I've been known to become giddy over a Real-World-Julie sighting.  In fact, Scott has long since figured out that the question, "Guess who I saw today?" really only has one plausible response.  Which means that now before I can even finish the question, he's already answering in his most lifeless, monotone voice, "iknowiknowrealworldjulie."    

In the 10 years that we have been neighbors, I have never had a conversation with her, but then two nights ago at the park...

Owen and I were out for an evening walk, and we came across Julie and her family having a birthday celebration for one of her children.  I, of course, had spotted her from no less than 50 yards out, and I was doing my best to mind my own business while simultaneously wondering if I would ever be able to wear white jeans as successfully as she was wearing them.  And the next thing I know, she is speaking to me.

Real World Julie:  That's the lookin'-est baby I've ever seen!

Me (poised for this momentous occasion):  Huh?

Real World Julie:  I said he's the lookin'-est baby.  He just seems to watch everything.

Me:  Oh, yeah.  He really likes to... watch... things.

Real World Julie:  I live on -----  Street.  I see you out walking a lot.

Me (panicked that I'm going to give away the fact that I already know exactly where she lives and that maybe she even suspects me of casing her house):  Oh, I only walk that way because I hate walking past the church the traffic is so bad I mean it's really dangerous I live on the corner of ----- and -----.  

Real World Julie (confused and smiling politely):  Yeah... 

Me :  Ummm.  I'm Shelley, by the way.

Real World Julie:  Hi, I'm Julie.

Sigh.  Why is it that I'm 33 years old and still only a half-step away from being the social spaz I was when I was 12?  On the upside, I think it's time to drop the Real World prefix from her name; now she's free to just be my neighbor Julie.  And the next time we run into her, the conversation is going to be effortless.

Because I plan to let Owen do all the talking.


Everyday Owen: Mirror Kisses

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Everyday Owen

So I've received constructive criticism about this blog from two sources in as many days, and the gist of it is this:  Quit trying so hard, Shelley.  So what's two people?  Well in my case, probably 25% of my regular readership, so I figure I'd better listen!  And plus...well...they're right.

So in their honor, I'm announcing Everyday Owen, a new blog feature that will bring you images of Owen and only images of Owen.  No punny blog title; no special occasion or theme; no overworked commentary.  Simply everyday Owen doing normal stuff.  Feel free to leave a comment and make requests, and I'll do my best to document that part of our day (within good taste, people!).

Naturally I'll continue to do the other kind of posting a few times a week too, because frankly, writing them has been a really fun outlet for me.  I'll just throw in the EO to fill in the blank spaces.

Here's to making everyone happy!

Monday, October 20, 2008

A message from Owen to his buddy

Hey Graham!

Going to the pumpkin patch with you today was fun.  Sometimes my mom tells me we're going to go do something fun, but it turns out to be a really bad idea and I don't have fun at all.  Like when we went to Kindermusik or the time they took me to the zoo and it rained the whole time and all there was to look at was a bunch of cats.  But today really was fun.
Before I forget - I'm really hoping you'll put in a good word for me with the big kid crowd.  Maybe you could avoid telling them that I still ride in a baby car seat?  Besides, I'm getting a big boy one like yours for my birthday in a few weeks.  And maybe no one has to know that I wet all over myself in my stroller today?  I mean, let's be honest, it's happened to all of us, and the embarrassment and shame should really fall on my mother for not changing me sooner.  Oh, and I'm sorry I wigged out on the way home when you were trying to tickle me.  I was getting really sleepy and plus I think all that sweet potato pie we ate at the farm was starting to get to me.  You should have heard the one I let rip when we were at the pharmacy this afternoon.  The teenager who checked us out had to try really hard not to laugh, and my mom turned all red and apologized.

I think the best part of today was going out to the pumpkin patch to pick out our own pumpkins.  Our moms kept warning us about all the sticker burrs on the bushes and they didn't even hurt.  I had one go all the way through my pants leg and I didn't even cry.  Seriously, I think it broke the skin and I didn't shed a tear.  I mean it may have even stuck all the way in my leg bone and I didn't let out a whimper.

Oh yeah- remember when we saw that giant monster fly get inside my mom's Pepsi bottle and we didn't tell her?  After we got home, she took the bottle out of her bag and started drinking it with the dead drowned fly in it!  She didn't even notice until she got near the end and something tickled her lip.  It was awesome.  I think she drank 50 gazillion glasses of water afterward to try to make it better.  Dad says Mom needs to drink more water anyway.

OK well bye for now.  

p.s.  My mom found some of your Cheerios in my carseat after we got home, so I think we may be busted.  Just want you to know I'll cover for you since I begged you to feed me some even though you weren't supposed to.  

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Bed head

Thought that curl was so cute I just left it there all day.

Friday, October 10, 2008


A lady at the park last week invited us to a free class at her Kindermusik studio.  She seemed a little odd, but only in a Mr. Rogers kind of way.  And weirdness is an asset when your work involves entertaining children, right?  When I read up on-line about it, the program promised we would experience the "essence of quality time":  gazing into baby's eyes, dancing together, snuggling during story time, and twirling under a sea of scarves.  So we decided to take her up on her offer today.

We were greeted by our sweet, perky, hippie teacher (hereafter known as SPHT), and she gathered us in a circle and launched into Welcome Starshine, which has lyrics that allow each child to be greeted while doing a motion of his or her own choice.  Fletcher was first, and he and his mom chose to clap.

Welcome today, friends of mine
Welcome today, little starshine
Clap, clap for Fletcher
Clap, clap for Fletcher

Reagan chose to sway.  Campbell choo-chooed, and Ava did something darling like blow kisses. Just as SPHT began to literally sing the question, "What would little Owen like to do?", Owen darted from my lap and headed for the door.  His apparent answer:  leave.

Wave bye to Owen
Wave bye to Owen

And we never really recovered.  Owen was the anti-participant of the class.  When SPHT brought out the giant drum, the other babies positioned themselves around it like adorable convicts putting their hands on the hood of a car.  Owen squeezed between two of them and climbed onto the drum.  Three times.  That "essence of quality time" we were supposed to experience while snuggling with a book and twirling under a sea of scarves was spent fishing Owen out of the other babies' car seats and mothers' purses.  

Owen's one redeeming moment came during This Little Light of Mine when he pointed his finger.  SPHT was beside herself and heaped praise on him.  She thought it was a breakthrough moment.  I didn't have the heart to tell her that Owen spends 82% of his waking hours pointing at things these days.  The gesture was merely a statistically probable coincidence. 

As we were leaving, SPHT reminded everyone that a new Kindermusik semester begins in three weeks.  But I think I'll hold out for a program that better suits Owen's energy level and personality type.  

Like rock climbing for infants or baby paintball.

Shots courtesy of an August photo session we had with Greer.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Now we're there

Nine friends and I had a slumber party over the weekend (yes, I'm too old for such things and that is precisely why it was so much fun).  When I came home Saturday, I learned that Owen figured out his walking toy earlier that morning.  Scott said he just crawled up to it, grabbed the bar to pull himself up and took off.  He'll walk until he reaches an obstruction and then wait patiently for someone to come turn him around.  

It's occurred to me that Owen has chosen to attain several of his milestones outside of my presence.  I must give him stage fright or something.  When it's time for those official first steps, I guess I'll have to pretend I'm going off to get a pedicure and then hide out across the street in the neighbors' bushes with a pair of binoculars instead.  

p.s. Between the saggy britches and creepy long hair growing behind his ears, he looks like Lil Wayne tried to style Dennis Franz, don't you think?

Friday, October 3, 2008


Some of my current Owen favorites:
  • He tucks his top lip into his bottom lip,  holds a clenched fist in the air and strains like he's got a rock in his hand that he is attempting to crumble into dust.
  • He pats my shoulder and my head when I rock him to sleep.  We've been working on the appropriate way to pet the cats, and he seems to think those lessons extend nicely to people as well.
  • We can undress him for his bath and put him down on the floor in the buff next to his changing table, and he will take off like a wind-up toy and head directly for the bath tub.
  • He feeds himself cheerios, bananas and avocado now.  When a bite gets away from him and sticks to the back of his hand, he will bite at it again.  Except usually his aim is not very good, and it squirts out of the side of his mouth and sticks farther up his arm.  Sometimes it's nearly to his elbow before he finally catches it.
  • Now that the weather is cool, we go out every afternoon and put down a blanket in the yard.  He sits near the edge concentrating fiercely on crumpling up dried leaves, and I lie there hypnotized by the sound of it.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008