Sunday, October 31, 2010


Noah had his first ever birthday party for a friend yesterday.  Shawn from preschool invited him and there were a lot of his preschool cronies there as well.  Amanda said that he had a tough time getting into the flow of the party and was quite clingy.  He had a pretty good time overall, but he was not at his best.  But this is one of the main reasons why he is in preschool so he can get more social time.  Amanda said that the saddest part happened when Noah pulled the string on the piñata, broke it, but didn't understand about grabbing candy.  He ended up with very little and in fact got hit on the head when Shawn's mom threw more candy into the ground.  It's a shame that they didn't have a regular piñata since Noah is pretty adept with a bat/club.

Meanwhile, I took Lily on something of a daddy/daughter date.  We drove out to Knightdale to pick up a new kitchen table and chairs.  We've been looking on Craigslist for months and finally found something appropriate.  Then Lily and I checked out a new game store in Knightdale that I highly recommend.  I told the owner that I had seen his ad but that I didn't have the coupon with me.  Yet he gave me 25% off as if I had the coupon.  That was good and something I want to make sure I tell the world.  I like it when local game stores flourish.  If you're in that part of town you should check them out.

I think I'm going to take Noah out today.  He wants to play some Skee-Ball.  Of course, that means him throwing the balls around or not quite up the ramp and me ultimately playing Skee-Ball, but that's OK.  He'll have fun either way.  I know that I will, particularly if I can find my 10,000 point groove.

Friday, October 29, 2010


They had the costume parade at Noah's preschool yesterday.  Apparently he loves his stormtrooper outfit, which makes me glad.  He also says that he can't see in it.  That's somewhat expected.  He may be more like Han Solo on Halloween in that he will have the basic outfit, but will not wear the mask much.

Amanda and I are talking about how we can regulate his Wii intake.  He is a very sweet little guy and is a lot easier to deal with than Lily.  He generally does what he's told and will even go to his room for a time-out without having to be carried kicking and screaming.  But he does put up quite a fight when it's time to turn off the Wii.  He may need to have a Wii fast at some point.  He won't like it, but it seems to be time for an intervention.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Halloween and Hockey

Noah in his homemade Halloween costume. We got the idea from a blog and made it happen. Amanda cut the milk jugs, glued them, and spray painted them. I did the detailing with black electrical tape and some markers.

I got the idea for this when Lily lost her front teeth. Of course, she is nowhere near tough enough to really be a hockey player, but I still think it's funny.

A closeup of the fangs.

Gearing Up

Today should be a pretty busy day at the Chamberlains.  Amanda is watching Noah's two friends this morning and then she is also babysitting for a friend in the afternoon.  Meanwhile, she needs to get a few pieces for Noah's stormtrooper outfit.  We're making a mask out of milk jugs that is quite the thing.  It should be very cute to see Noah as a stormtrooper, if he will wear the mask.  At the very least he will be like Han Solo carrying the mask around.

Overall, things are pretty good right now.  I apologize for the irregular posts lately, but there has not been a ton to write about.  I still owe you that pic of Lily with her tooth though!

Monday, October 25, 2010

No More Snaggle

It was a busy day yesterday.  So busy that I didn't even get a blog post written.  I took Lily to a benefit concert for an orphanage in Kenya.  We got to hear some cool drumming and then Lily enjoyed the ballet that followed. It's neat that she knew some of the dancers.

The highlight of our day yesterday was the canoe trip that got postponed from a month or so prior.  We were scheduled to do a sunset canoe tour of Lake Crabtree one Sunday evening, but it got thunderstormed out.  The weather could not have been better yesterday.  It was in the mid 70s with a breeze.  We spent a couple of hours in a canoe on Lake Crabtree while Aunt Nat sat with the kids.  It was nice to get out.

Meanwhile, Lily lost her other tooth.  She had been actively wiggling it all weekend, and finally let Amanda yank it out last night.  I had a hard time finding the tooth fairy pillow and Lily actually woke up when I came into her room the second time (I had to ask Amanda where it was).  I told her that I heard she lost a tooth and wanted to see it.  That's when I surreptitiously exchanged the tooth for a dollar.  I'll post a pic when one is available.

Saturday, October 23, 2010


We took Lily to see Chris Tomlin last night.  The music was excellent.  He doesn't put on the best show, but the music was great and it was a nice time of worship.  Sadly, Lily didn't seem to enjoy it much.  She decided partway through that she simply had to go to the bathroom and Amanda took her.  She complained about wanting water all the time.  She sat in her chair through most of it too.  We're not sure what the problem was as she tends to like his music, but it was clear that she did not enjoy herself very much.

I guess we can't win them all.  At least she ate her lunch at school yesterday.  She took PB & J in separate containers and made the sandwich at school.  She had to finish a few grapes when she got home, but that's OK. At least she ate her protein.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Isabella, We Hardly Knew Ye

So it's come down to this.  I told Lily that she had to eat her lunch today, tomorrow, and all next week or she would never see Isabella again.  It didn't happen.  I sent her grapes and chicken salad.  She loves chicken salad, particularly from Sam's.  That's what it was, but she didn't eat it because she said that she couldn't remember what it tasted like and she doesn't want to eat anything when she doesn't remember how it tastes.  The good news is that she managed to get through 7 grapes today instead of the 3 she did the other day.

I've found a couple of potential good homes for Isabella, so I feel better about that than flushing her.  I had thought about offering her to Brenna, but the point was for Lily not to see her again.  And so it ends.

Lily is learning about consequences for her actions.  She was crying that, "I want Isabella!" and I kept telling her, "Apparently not.  If you did, you would have eaten your lunch."  I think she's starting to make the connection.  Like all of us, she wants things both ways (I would love to be fit without exercising, educated without reading books, etc), but she is learning that life doesn't work that way.

Salutations and Valedictions

Watching your preschooler develop with language is a bit like working out.  One day you step on the scale and discover that you've lost 20 pounds since you started.  In the same way, one day you notice that the little guy is starting to get the hang of this language thing.  As we left for preschool this morning Noah extended his right arm and turned his little hand as he looked up the stairs at Amanda and said, "Bye, Mommy!"

It's not a big deal, but it was incredibly cute.  Incidentally, a little girl said goodbye to him in the hall at preschool today.  He didn't seem to notice.  I hope that she doesn't think him aloof.  He's just three.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Little Ghandi

We're having a rough week with lunches.  Lily has yet to eat a lunch.  She says that she finds the time to eat her lunch when she buys, but somehow she gets distracted when she packs.  Therefore, she is going to pack until she figures it out.  We've also raised the stakes with Isabella.  If she misses a meal once between now and next Friday Isabella is gone forever.  I even went so far as to print a picture of Isabella with a note reminding Lily that Isabella wants to come home and be with her.  That didn't help today.

Besides that, things are pretty good.  Lily ran in the Spirit Sprint today and managed either 18 or 19 laps (we're not sure).  Amanda was there to help hand out rubber bands to the kids and said that Lily ran really well.  The kids get a rubber band after every lap.  The course they run is very small, but it's still a big improvement for Lily. Thank you to those who supported her.  Our contribution tipped her into the $101+ category, so she is getting lots of prizes.  The only one she really cares about is the one everyone gets -- a Chick-Fil-A sandwich coupon.  The girl knows what she likes.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Fair Night

I took my bride to the NC State Fair last night to see Casting Crowns in concert.  Frankly, I am starting to sour a bit on the whole CCM scene because so much of it is saccharine.  But I have to say that they put on a pretty good show.  They weren't real high on showmanship (Third Day is very much worth seeing in that respect as are the Newsboys).  The performances were basically like listening to a mix tape of their big hits, just really really loud.  But it was great to pray with them and hear about their heart for the church.  Plus, I really enjoyed my piece of deep-fried pecan pie before the show.

Uncle Bill sat with the kids.  He of course got sucked into playing Wii with them.  He said that the kids behaved well, which is all we could ask for.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

All is Well

Amanda survived her whirlwind day on Tuesday, though it was pretty exhausting.  Lily's doctor's appointment went very well, though she was not happy to get a shot.  They gave her a Hep A shot.  We realize that the chances of her getting Hep A are pretty slim, but if she were to get it she would be sick for three months.  It seemed like a minute of discomfort was worth it.  Lily is now exactly average for height and weight.  She is in the 50-70 percentile for both.  I don't have her exact dimensions handy, but she's right about at 48 inches.  This is pretty good for someone who was historically a tiny peanut.

The kids enjoyed Veggie Tales Live.  Apparently the show went a bit long because they had some sound board problems at the beginning.  But the kids enjoyed it, particularly Lily and Brenna.  Noah enjoyed it too, but was getting antsy near the end.  The kids got to bed late, but I think they considered it a worthwhile sacrifice.

I dragged Lily and Noah to Sam's Club yesterday evening, but we did enjoy some ice cream there.  It's certainly a cheap place to get dessert.  And it's also a lot lower-key at Sam's on a Wednesday evening than Saturday or Sunday afternoon.  Lily doesn't like going to Sam's anymore, but ice cream seems to help.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Busy Weekend

I apologize for the blog silence, but it's been a busy time since my last.  Saturday was full of Ohio State football and church.  Sunday had pancakes and some errands.  First, we visited Isabella at my office to feed her.  I was off for Columbus Day yesterday, so the long weekend would have been too much.  Then we did some of our usual stuff like Doggy Day Camp, Play N Trade, etc.  The highlight for Lily was stopping at Target to use some birthday money.  She got herself a Disney princess whose outfit changes color in the bath.  The highlight of the day was Amanda being home when we got back.

Yesterday I did homework in the morning and then went to Durham to donate platelets in the afternoon.  By the time I got back I had to get Lily from the bus and then take her to ballet.  I managed to drag Noah along even though he was barely awake from his nap.  It's kind of funny to see him all dazed.

Today should be a busy one too.  Amanda is watching Noah's friends Reid and Halle today.  Lily has a doctor's appointment.  Then in the evening she is taking Lily, Noah, and Brenna to see Veggie Tales Live at our church.  Meanwhile, I will have class.  Hopefully tomorrow will be a little more mellow.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Corn Maze

I took the kids to the corn maze last night.  The maze seemed a little tougher than last year's.  We did fairly well finding the various stations and we took a community approach in shamelessly asking others where they found some of the stations we needed.  The goal of the maze is to get a punch at each of the ten stations on a sheet that they give you when you start.

Lily got pretty tired of walking in the maze and I offered to have us quit, but she wanted to press on.  I was very proud of her.  Fortunately, we still had sunshine when we finished.  I am very glad that we went last night instead of on Sunday when the high is supposed to be in the low 80s.  It gets kind of hot with Noah on my shoulders.

We also took advantage of the other things at the farm.  We took a very mellow hayride, which both kids enjoyed.  Lily was asking me questions about farming that pushed the limits of my expertise.  Fortunately, I can tell the difference between a cow and a horse.  I also know what a cow patty looks like from firsthand experience.  But when we start getting into "what's that" when she sees farm equipment that gets pulled behind a tractor I have to start guessing.  Next time we go on a hayride at a working farm we need either Grandpa Gary or Nana around as consultants.

Lily really enjoyed the big inflatable.  They had one with a long obstacle course that finished with a climbing wall and slide.  Noah decided to do it.  He kept trying to stop with the climbing wall, but I talked him into doing it.  He kind of wiped out at the bottom of the slide, which was a bit of a sour end.  Nevertheless, I was extremely proud of his courage in climbing what had to be about a 12 foot wall.  He's a lot braver than Lily was at 3.  For that matter, he's a lot braver than I was at 3 too.

Today should be a fairly mellow day.  We need to hit Sam's.  We're probably going to watch the OSU game online.  Then we will spend all afternoon and early evening at church while I serve at the bookstore.  Lily is still unsure about intersection (the class for kids who have to be there for 2 service), but I think she will have fun.  I also think I'll find Noah glued to the big TV.

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Weekend Begins

Amanda left this morning for a women's retreat with the ladies of our church.  She won't be back until Sunday night, so it is just the kids and me.  I'm taking advantage of this morning by hanging out at Panera Bread and doing some work on a project for school while Noah enjoys preschool.  So far it's been a productive time, but it will soon be time to get back to work.

I haven't quite decided what we're going to do this weekend, but I do know that we're going to hit a corn maze at some point.  That may be this evening.  We'll have church tomorrow.  We'll probably go shopping on Sunday afternoon, but we may also do something outside in the morning.  We've got to take advantage of the nice weather while it lasts.

I find myself looking forward to weekends with the kids.  I suspect I would feel differently if I got to spend all my days with them.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Game Night

Lily ended up in her room tonight for not eating a perfectly good dinner (she says that she will never eat noodles), which left lots of time for Noah.  I didn't want to just go down to the basement for another night of PS2 games, so we tried a couple of board games.

First, we gave Memory a shot.  You may recall that Lily was an ace when it came to Memory.  Sadly, Noah can't quite pay enough attention to do it.  He likes the idea of playing it, but can't stay focused.  We then moved to Trouble.  That went better, but we still didn't finish.

I don't think that this is necessarily a bad thing.  We can't expect a little boy to sit still like a little girl.  Nevertheless, we're going to keep trying.  He needs to get focused on other things besides the Wii.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Two in a Row

Amanda went to Lily's school for the program called "A Book and a Bite."  This is where a parent comes in to read to the kids at lunchtime.  This was also good because the child of the parent gets to join in on this.  This means that Lily dutifully ate her lunch, though she did drop some of her egg on the floor.  Nevertheless, we called it a success.

Lily had a good day at ballet and tap class as well.  It's nice when we get to bedtime and we don't have any major sins to confess.  Frankly, that's good for any of us, isn't it?

Monday, October 4, 2010

Boys Afternoon Out

It was time to get a few errands done yesterday.  I took Noah and dragged Lily to Wal-Mart and Sam's for some grocery shopping.  Lily brought her purse and I had to talk her out of making what seemed like would be a foolish purchase.  Ultimately, I think she was happy I did.

Lily and Katie were playing in the afternoon so I took Noah out.  We hit Play 'N Trade and I picked up 4 PS2 games for $10.  He's very excited to play them.  Then we went to the local music store as well as to a store that sells board games, puzzles, role-playing games, cards, etc.  It was fun to hang with the Pook.  Of course, we're going to get lots of time next week when Amanda is out of town.

Lily said something particularly funny at bedtime.  We couldn't think of anything she did yesterday that was particularly naughty, which is good.  But I did point out that we still haven't had a day without whining or crying.  I asked her when she thought she would be able to do that and she pointed up.  What she was saying was that she will go without whining when Christ returns in glory.  I had to laugh at that.  It's good that she has a keen sense of her own sinfulness in that regard though.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Ending Well

This ended up being a pretty good week for Lily.  She ate her lunch on Tuesday.  She got to enjoy a teachers' workday holiday yesterday.  The highlight was going to Target and using the gift cards she got for her birthday.  She got some clothes, a Barbie doll, and a zhu zhu pet.  I think she thought the idea of the zhu zhu pet was better than actually having one, but she is still happy.

We are enjoying that time of the year when the weather is just about perfect.  As of right now, life is good in Cary.