The McBryders

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Somebody Stop That Girl!

Hello and Happy Holidays! McDood here. Remember me? You can always tell it's me at a glance since I use this unique Blue Courier font.

Anyway, my appearance on this blog is long overdue if you ask SeattleS. And honestly, I wouldn't even be posting now if it weren't for SeattleS's special request.

About a month or so ago we made a promise to ourselves to keep our camcorder loaded, powered-up and cued just in case something "unusual" occurred suddenly.

Of course, as Murphy so eloquently theorized, when the unusual did occur, the camcorder was 10 miles out of reach on a table top in our house. We were at our regularly scheduled Monday Night [Football] get-together with Cousin Joshua, Aunt Janey and Uncle Bob. Uncle Bob was able to capture a few video moments, but we haven't yet had those sent to us.

Over the next couple of weeks we made extra sure to be Johnnies-on-the-Spot with the camcorder. Below are a few exemplars of Little Sammy's developmental strides. Enjoy!

Unusual Occurrence 1

Unusual Occurrence 2

Unusual Occurrence 3

Unusual Occurrence 4

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Testing Video...

Here is a video of our Oktoberfest party.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Belated Thanksgiving

Yes, yes, I know it is December. And that Thanksgiving was practically two weeks ago. But sometimes it just takes awhile to get into the blogging mood.

Two weeks ago yesterday, we packed our car and drove six hours down to Breitenbush Hot Springs in Oregon.

This is the villa that houses the dining room, the library and the great big room in which Sam loved to crawl.

This is the fourth time I've been there, the third time David has been there and the first time for Sammy. It is a fantastic place - rustic cabins in a cedar grove, three hot spring pools overlooking a river, a "medicine wheel" which is four hot tubs of differing temperatures plus one *cold* tub, a steam sauna, and three wonderful vegetarian meals a day. Normally it is the epitome of relaxation. This time, not so much. First off, it was wet wet wet. And David was sick sick sick. And Sammy was crabby crabby crabby. But...that being said, Breitenbush is a great place and I am looking forward to taking Sam once she can walk on her own.

These pictures were taken on a previous trip. I did get to sneak away while Sam and David were napping and soak in this pool. Just imagine it with big raindrops. There is no better way to be out in the rain than soaking in a natural hot spring.

One of the greatest things about this trip was visiting our friend Jeff, who is a part of the Breitenbush community. He showed us the eclectic community village, and his cozy loft house. The people at BB are amazing, the staff and the visitors alike.

This is a friend that Sam met at BB. She took to Sammy immediately and would swoop in to play with her or take her walking, giving David and I a chance to finish our meal. Every time she saw Sam, she would break into a big smile. And surprisingly, she wasn't the only person who did these sorts of things. There were quite a few "aunts" who appeared out of nowhere to play with Sammy. I think the surroundings of Breitenbush inspire these interactions - I can't imagine anyone doing this at our local grocery store!

After Breitenbush, we packed back into the car and drove for about 5 hours to Long Beach to stay at David's parents' house. We arrived the day before Thanksgiving and had a lovely visit. Dinner was wonderful with all of the traditional dishes, and we got to meet some of Jack and Helen's friends. The next day, Sam's cousin, aunt and uncle came down and we had a rollicking, rambunctous time with the kiddos. Very fun! We were able to stay Wed - Sun so we had a chance to relax.
Just the tip of the iceburg when it comes to things I am thankful for:
  • We have two loving households with whom we could've spent Thanksgiving. I would much rather have the need to choose over having no place to go at all!
  • I managed to stave off the cold until after the holidays and travelling.
  • I have a sweet little daughter who, even though she would rather stay awake for 5 hours than nap in the car, is a trooper.
  • I have a super smart husband that can guess (correctly!) at crossword puzzles while driving.

And lastly, when I take the time to remember, I have everything I need and more.

Though this is turning into a novella, I have a few Sam phases that I want to share so I won't forget them (some of these phases are lightening-quick!)

  • Instead of the typical "I want some comfort" cry of "Ma-ma-ma", Sammy says "me-me-me". Spoken by a true Leo toddler!
  • When she wants to see Blue's Clues - she will point to the TV, get up on her knees and open and close both of her fists (like they do in the song on the show).
  • I adore how she helps with the laundry - and now, she tries to put the clothes on as she takes them out of the hamper, ending up with underwear on her head!
  • Lately, Sammy has been more vocal - mimicking our words. She does great with "a" words: apple, avocado (kinda), ankle. In fact, most often when she is chattering to herself she says what sounds like "`A Qui", or "A chi" ('to whom' in both French and Italian), or achy or ankh or "a key". She also says "up" and "map" enunciating the 'p' very carefully.
  • The impish twinkle in her eye as she takes a mouthful of milk and refuses to swallow - preferring to let it dribble down her chin. She'll be gulping down the milk like nobody's business and then you'll see it - the twinkle...and next thing you know she is playing the "let's see how long I can hold this mouthful in my mouth" game. It looks something like this face (this would be the "I just picked something off the floor and stuck it in my mouth - are you going to come get me?" face)
  • The sign for "Please" is to move one open hand in a circle over your heart. Sammy's version is to put both hands on her chest, wiggle back and forth and say "eeeeeze". Here is her one handed version (as she is reaching for the snack. Notice her mouth is still full as she is asking for the next! Ha!):
  • We had an unusual couple of snow days last week. I took Sam out to feel the huge flakes dropping on her face. The look of pure joy was fabulous! She first shrank against me as the flakes swirled toward her, but then her mouth opened and eyes widened and she had the biggest smile of amazement. I wish I had a picture. It's the same look she gets as she shrieks with pleasure when we drive through a tunnel.

Happy holidays.