Sunday, January 29, 2012

Still Life

Tess recently took great interest in a library book that suggested ideas for creating artwork based on famous masterpieces.  When she saw this bowl of fruit, she told me:  "Mom, I want to paint a still life!"

I loved how her painting turned out and wanting to feed her interest, I thought we should take a trip to the art gallery.  We took Drew along as well, since he is also a budding Picasso.

Of course, we had to get in a full dose of Curious George on a Saturday morning.  But once that was done, we headed off to D.C.

Even as a kid, I've always loved museums.  I love that Tess loves going to museums, too.  It's all very exciting: the hunt for a parking space (OK, not so much that part--though we did get an AMAZING spot!); the buzz of the busy city; the grand buildings with soaring architecture and stately columns; and room after room of treasures.

I always love watching artists in the gallery try their hand at replicating the famous paintings.  On one visit with Tess when she was quite little, there was a group of school children being taught by an art teacher in one of the gallery rooms.  The sight of their little bodies spread out on the floor with sketch paper and pencils in hand was more than Tess could stand.  She begged for a pencil and I managed to scrounge up a pen and the blank side of a grocery store receipt so she could join in the back of the room.

So this time, I brought some colored pencils and a sketch pad.  Tess got herself comfortable on the fanciest couch she could find and focused in on a still life by Cezanne, Flowers in a Rococo Vase.  Drew scribbled away under close supervision from Dad.  

Tess decided to draw some "different, interesting flowers" while I attempted a more true-to-life sketch.  Tess held my drawing up for close comparison, and then noted that I "forgot something" and quickly drew in an essential, missing yellow flower.  

I used to love looking at our copy of the gallery guide book as a kid, so we bought one at the gift shop.  Hopefully it will provide more artistic inspiration!

A fun day in the city.  We'll have to do it again sometime.

Friday, January 27, 2012


Tess checked out quite well at her annual physical exam.  Tess Bess weighed in at 33.5 lbs and she's 41.5 inches tall.  That puts her in the 50th percentile for weight and 92nd percentile for height!!!  I suspected a bit of a growth spurt over the past couple months, since all of her pants are now highwaters.

We got to wait in the princess examination room, and the nurse left a blue "princess" examination gown for her to wear.  


We had a long wait, so we fashioned her a crown out of paper from the examination table.  I asked Tess why she kept giving me this goofy smile with half-mast eyelids.  She said it was her "princess smile."  "That how princesses smile, don't you know?!!"

She decided she looked most like the princess in the blue dress.

After all that fairytale pretending, she got a sharp dose of reality with 5 vaccinations.  Five!  She's really good for shots, though.  She hardly flinched and shed a single tear.  The nurses were astonished.  

Tess is pleased with the 3 decorative bandaids on her thighs (1 with penguins and 2 Tinkerbells).  Last night she told me,  "Mom, you know why I like to pull my pants down?  So I can look at my bandaids."

Tess' legs have been very sore around because of the vaccinations and she told me she needed "suspenders" because her legs were broken.  I told her that crutches were for broken legs.  She turned red when I told her that suspenders were for people whose pants keep falling down.

Now she keeps asking me for "cut-ez" and I keep telling the paper bag princess her to pull her pants up.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Friday, January 20, 2012

Chugging Along

Our quiet home days are highlighted by Tess' preschool hours every-other day.  She is doing GREAT with school and is loving it.  She actually looks forward to it now!  I may wish it were a little longer, but it is just perfect for her.  She no longer needs her "mommy picture" at school or at church.  She is coming into her own and it's so nice to see her happy.

We've started having "homework time" in the morning, where I work with Tess on a few skills and Drew gets to color (he usually ends up decorating his highchair tray).  She loves doing "homework" and has taken to writing "Good Job!" on all her papers. 

Unexpected side benefit:  I can actually get her to play independently afterwards for a little while by telling her it's "center time."  Today she played in the "trains and cars" center.  Drew joined her as the caboose after he spent a little time at the "changing dirty diapers" center.  

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Puppy Drew

This Sunday's "Dapper Drew" ensemble is courtesy of Nana & Papa.  They gave Drew this adorable church outfit for Christmas, and I love it because my nickname for Drew is "Puppy."  

It was a chilly, breezy morning, so I had a hard time getting Drew to look at me for these shots.  Good thing he has a delightful profile.

Awwww!  My Puppy!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Snowball Fight Between Glass

We got a few snowflakes today.  
Tess was ECSTATIC and first spotted them when only microscopic 
flakes were falling from the sky.  

Tess LOVES to play in the snow, but me not so much.  
And Tess always wants someone to play with her.  

Drew loves to watch Tess do pretty much anything.

So I perched him behind the glass door and Tess belted snowballs 
at him all afternoon, to his great delight.

I am a brilliant mother.

Or at least I thought I was.  
But the snow kept falling, and I only worked to postpone the inevitable until after dark.  

Snowman Jack, January 2012
Tess came up with idea of using frozen blueberries for his eyes and mouth.
She went to bed crying because Dad didn't want to make snow angels with her in the dark.  
"But I have a flashlight!"  
Her snow love is insatiable.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Clean. . . and not so clean

Drew got a few new church outfits for Christmas, so I'll be posting some Dapper Drew pics over the next weeks.  I have a baby-boy overall obsession right now.  They are nearly impossible to find in stores, so I ordered a couple pairs off etsy.  Here are gazillion shots of Dapper Drew in Baby Blue and Chocolate.

Eat him up!

You can't really call yourself a Murdock baby until you have a few spaghetti shots under your belt.  Here are Tessie's pics.  Welcome to the club, Drew!

Ah, yeah!  In the hair.  Spaghetti shampoo.