Tag Archive | kids

Tiny Tunes

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When you were a teeny, tiny little one did you have any favorite tunes?

A song that you remember singing all the time?

Or a particular song sung to you by someone?

Today as I spent time with my 3 youngest nephews I got to thinking about this…

You all know just how much I love music. I grew up with it.

Listening to all sorts of oldies in addition to¬† Fleetwood Mac, Journey, The Beatles, U2, Christopher Cross, CCR, Simon & Garfunkel, Whitney Houston, Depeche Mode, Taylor Dane and loads more. Listening to mom’s records and both mom & dad’s tapes … owning my own tapes & CDs …now my music library chalked full with digital files that is ever growing.

As a kid I was sung to all the time. From itsy bitsy spider in the bath as a wee little one at home to begging my Aunt Sue to sing Puff the Magic Dragon 50 million times when we’d visit. Music was always there and very much loved.

With my 3 youngest nephews I find myself singing to them A LOT! To soothe them when they’re upset and to spark giggles and smiles at any given time.

B. Shane’s favorites sung by all of us were You Are My Sunshine and the ABCs. Not to mention all the songs from Thomas the Tank Engine & the Wiggles… we’d do motions, and dance and just be silly. Though now,¬† at age 10 he’d be quick to deny any and all of these ever occurred! ūüėČ His current favorites are now The Beatles,¬† Linkin Park & Green Day plus anything he can play on his guitar!

Here’s my favorite version of You Are My Sunshine

P. Dub is absolutely hysterical when music comes on. At the young age of 14 months old he already has quite an eclectic taste in tunes. From Twinkle,¬† Twinkle Little Star he has moved on to Green Day and If You’re Happy & You Know It. Yes, that is correct…. Green Day. B. Shane puts it on and P. Dub goes bonkers dancing along. It’s the cutest thing ever!!! If my laptop was up and running I’d share a video of this sweetness… grrr! Another favorite he demands his “gamma” sing again & again is Row, Row, Row Your Boat.

As for the newest, almost 2 month old nephew, J-Man… who knows what his favorite will be… we shall have to wait & see.

Little bro and I have already discussed staging a music intervention on the boys if they only end up listening to top 40, Pop, R&B & rap! According to little sis, Extreme’s “More Than Words” is a hippie song, so we may have our work cut out for ourselves! ūüôā

In my opinion AND experience, exposing a child to music is just as important as reading. Music allows children to express themselves in ways they may not yet be able to communicate verbally… it has the power to teach (as made evident in my classrooms over the years)… it allows for creativity & independence.

From tiny tunes for toddlers to classical to contemporary to iconic artists spanning across the decades, music is a language of its very own.

What songs do you remember from your childhood?  What music/artist have you carried with you through the years from your childhood?

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Can you tell me how to get; how to get to Sesame Street? HAPPY 1st BIRTHDAY P-Dub!!!

It’s hard for me to believe that a wee little bit over a year ago, we welcomed nephew #4 into our loving arms….

And who would have thought he’d be a big brother already…

But time surely flies when we’re all having fun and our little P-Dub turned 1-year-old in June!

The weather was absolutely gorgeous the day of his party; tons of family and friends joined us in celebrating; I was no longer buried under Sesame Street characters as the decorations were hung; good eats were shared and the birthday boy had a BLAST!

Take a peek at the fun festivities and take note of a couple of things….

The cake was made by a longtime family friend who also made lil sis’ cakes for her bridal shower and wedding.

Lil sis was 8 1/2 months preggers for this party! ¬†Doesn’t she look f.a.b.u.l.o.u.s?!?!? ¬†She ended up having Jamisen 8 days later!

The birthday boy quite obviously had a pretty good time at his party… all tuckered out in the pavilion after going strong with NO nap in the middle of the day!

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Oh, Happy Day!

Today started off in the most perfect way possible!  (even if it was a little bit after 2:00 AM when I got the call, just as it is now when I am writing to you!)

You see, I generally love the 4th of July… excepting of course the year I made enemies with fireworks!

But on this July 4th, I got the best, most wonderful surprise ever imaginable!

I became an aunt for the 6th time!!!

Me & my little J-man...

At 5:23 AM this little fella joined the world at 7lbs. 11oz. and 19 inches long… the tiniest of lil sis’s boys decided he’d make his appearance in his own time, a while two weeks early!

Mommy, Daddy, biggest brother (B-Shane) and little big brother (P-Dub) are all doing well as is the newest, sweetest, most adorable little addition (J-Man).

J-Man, Me, & B-Shane

Talk about brightening some not so bright days! ¬†It was pretty much impossible to NOT smile all day, even when I for a second would think about what is not so perfect lately. ¬†(More to come on that in a later post… I promise!)

Love at first sight really does exist...

No matter how many times it happens, holding that little one for the first time…seriously it is love at first sight. ¬† So blessed to have 5 happy and healthy nephews and 1 beautiful and bubbly¬†niece.

Now, I may be a bit biased but….. he is the cutest, most adorably, handsome little man I’ve ever seen! Well, at least since P-Dub was born last year… ūüėČ

What a perfect way to celebrate July 4th… with family and friends AND my sweet little J-Man.

Many congratulations and much love to lil sis… She done good! ¬†Very proud of her…. such a tough cookie!!!

Many congratulations to bro-in-law… You make a great poppa! ¬†I know you’re getting the B-ball team all lined up!

Hugs and congrats to the biggest brother, B-Shane… You are already a fabulous big brother! ¬†You’re such a good role model for your little brothers; I just know, they’ll look up to you!

And our little P-Dub… How are you all of a sudden not a baby anymore?!? ¬†You bring smiles and laughter to everyone around you! ¬†Be nice to the baby and help mommy! ūüôā

So for now, little sis and hubby have a perfect little family… made up of all the essentials… P B & J. Isn’t that cute?! ¬†Totally unplanned too!

B-Shane, P-Dub & J-Man

Welcome to the world baby boy!  Aunt Mae loves you bunches already!!!

xoxoxo

A Mother’s Day First

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Happy, happy Mother’s day to all the fabulous women out there!¬† All you do in the day-to-day truly makes you amazing!

My mom is no exception… she’s a strong woman; strong in her faith and heart.¬† Dedicated, loving and giving.¬†This woman¬†can do it all… and pretty much has for as long as I can remember.

Soooo, today in hopes of giving her a MUCH deserved break…. I volunteered to host Mother’s Day at my house!¬† I know¬†right?¬† You read that correctly.¬† I am cooking a meal for my family and am quite nervous about it!¬† Nothing too fancy, just some chicken, potatoes and veggies yet nervous none the less.

¬†No matter the outcome of the meal, all that¬†matters is that we’ll be together celebrating my momma… and my little sis too.¬† Good mommas for sure.¬† Someday I hope that I can be at least half as good at mothering as these two ladies.¬†

HAPPIEST of Mother’s Days to you all!¬† Enjoy your day… today, we celebrate you!

And to my momma… Love you bunches!!!!!!!¬† You’re the best!

Leaving my mark…

I often wonder if the path I’m walking along is where I’m meant to be….

If the choices I’ve made are the “RIGHT” ones….

I’ve done a lot and seen a lot in a bit over 32 years.¬† I’ve held several jobs… I’ve been in relationships… I’ve made and lost friends… I’ve moved… started new adventures…¬†

“… I want to be remembered as the girl who always smiles even when her heart is broken, and the one that could always brighten up your day even if she couldn’t brighten her own…”¬† -Author unknown

But, there are days I sit back and wonder if I am doing enough. 

 Am I leaving my mark in the world???

How am I going to be remembered one day?

I’m not sure what people would say… I’m not sure I want to ask either to be honest…

I do know that I want to be remembered for many things….

I want to be remembered as a strong, caring, thoughtful individual having taken care of myself and stood strong in the toughest of circumstances while caring and respecting myself and others…Thinking of others before myself when necessary and distinguishing when it is appropriate to think of myself first.

I want to be remembered as a good daughter, sister, aunt, friend and some day wife and mother… putting family first before all else and providing¬†for them unconditionally.¬†Sharing of our happys¬†and sads¬†right along with each other no matter the situation or circumstance.

I want to be remembered as a woman of many talents having explored my creative outlets to my fullest desires… From my home decor items to writing to someday hopefully photography and who knows what else.

I want to have made an impact on someone’s life; my influence having changed a person for the better whether through mentoring, teaching or just sharing of myself in one way or another.¬† I want to be remembered as a positive influence… shaping and changing someone’s path for the better…

I want to be remembered for my love of life… for embracing all that comes my way and everyone that crosses my path.¬† Not quick to pass judgement and accepting of all.

I want to be remembered as a good person, an honest and trustworthy person.¬† One who speaks honestly and with tact; saying what one needs to hear in a way most appropriate for the given situation.¬† I DON’T want to be remembered for saying negative or ill-mannered things to others.¬† I want to be remembered for earning and maintaining trusts…¬†

I want to be remembered as a determined and ambitious woman… Not afraid to embark on new endeavors and try new things… Realistic enough, though to maintain a proper vision of what is appropriate, necessary and well, realistic.¬† Remembered for not just setting goals but achieving them…

I want to be remembered for grace in my heart… for acknowledging when I am wrong while accepting and acknowledging my faults… Making right when needed and trying my best.¬† Having the grace to fail with dignity and the pride to celebrate even the smallest of successes.

Is this accurate to what others would say??? I’m really not sure to be honest…¬† But, I do know that I need to appreciate all that I have and all that I do while I can.¬† You never know what life has in store for you.¬† Things can always change in the matter of moments… If you were to leave today, would you be happy with the mark you’ve left?¬†

I’m not sure that I am 100% happy with the mark I’m leaving, so I am going to try… try to right the wrongs; try to continue along my path and see where it takes me…. keeping mind all along the way, what my actions, words and thoughts could do or lead to…¬† Being more aware of all that I interact with…

I’ve got some work to do… At least I can acknowledge it and am planning on making an effort…

Focusing a bit more on the mark I am leaving…¬†

What would you say???¬† Are these accurate or wayyyyyyy off point?¬† Tell me!¬† I wanna know; can’t fix anything unless I know it’s broken!¬†

Are you leaving a mark?  How do you want to be remembered?

Pen and paper…

When was the last time you received a letter in the mail?

Something other than a bill….¬† not a shipment from an online order.¬† An actual letter.¬†¬†

I want mail!!!

Real, honest to goodness, hand-written letters containing casual discourse and sentiments from a friend, family member or the like have somehow become extinct.

I’ve found myself having this discussion twice in the last week while reading posts of my fellow bloggers.¬† My friend shared, “Patience Is A¬†Virtue”¬†¬†at Reminiscing Via the Written Language, highlighting not only our love of technology,¬†but also the¬†lack of patience we’ve acquired due to increased use of technology.¬† Another find was “It’s a Small World”¬†from Wordsmith’s Writing Desk highlighting the broadness of technology and how internet has made it so easy to “meet”¬† individuals from all over the world with the click of a button.¬† The post that followed, “Too Great a Price To Pay” fell into suit leading me to this post today.¬†

When I was younger, I somehow buddied up with the older sister of one of my friends.¬† She kinda took me under her wing and looked out for me.¬† I was devastated when they moved away, afraid we’d never speak again.¬† Imagine my excitement when I received a letter in the mail from Becky. It wasn’t just any letter however; it was plastered with doodles, stickers and happy faces; heart-felt words were hand-written from top to bottom from and back.¬† Our letters went on for a good while; each time the mail carrier delivered one I couldn’t have been more excited!¬† Somewhere along the way our correspondence tapered off until it ceased completely.¬† Some 20 odd years later, I still have a couple of these letters saved in storage.¬† Why?¬† I dunno… They’re a part of my story I guess.¬† A relic.¬† A memory.

Friendly letters.  Love letters.  Letters to pen pals. 

¬†When I was quite young, I once even wrote a letter to a company because the package of pushpins I purchased did not include the correct number of push pins in the package as it advertised!¬† AND, I got a letter in response, along with another package of push pins (which also didn’t have the correct number of pins in the package I might add)… But still I wrote a letter and got one in return.

As I got older, I wrote letters to some of my “elder” friends as they began going off to college.¬† When I went away to college I received and wrote many a letter myself.¬† Somewhere though, the letters started to dwindle and e-mails began to be exchanged.¬†

E-mails continue but Instant Messaging begins to take over followed by texting, MySpace, Facebook and Twitter. 

I think the fellas¬†hit the nail on the head… we’ve lost patience; we want instant gratification.

As for my thoughts…¬†¬†¬†

I am a lover of technology… I have a laptop, a cell phone, an iPod and such.¬† I utilize each on a daily basis.¬† Quite honestly when one or all of this gadgets is down and own, I’m kinda lost.¬† Recently, I was left with no cell phone for about 2 & 1/2 hours and seriously didn’t know what to do with myself.¬† My laptop was down for a bout 2 weeks until a replacement a/c adaptor came in the mail and I found myself squinting and fumbling over my thumbs while trying to post to WordPress from my phone.¬† If I text a friend and I don’t get a somewhat immediate response, I am left wondering if they are angry or something is wrong.¬† My Nike + adaptor wasn’t working for my iPod so instead of walking without knowing my distance and time, I took along my phone to track my run in addition to my iPod so that I could listen to tunes; God forbid I jog just to jog and listen to my surroundings instead of filling my ears with familiar songs.

As I shared over at Wordsmith’s, it is so amazing to meet people from all walks of life, all over the world and be able to communicate so freely through the blogosphere, twitter, IM and so forth. I consider myself pretty damn lucky to have met the people I have in this ever-growing cyber world through my blog.¬† Sometimes, even though I know my in-person friends and family are reading this, it can be easier to share more freely here and converse with my “blogging friends”¬†more openly.¬† We’re all here doing the same things; sharing our thoughts, stories and humor with the world.¬† ¬†But, as my friend at Written Language pointed out, technology has made us become less patient.

We no longer take the time to handwrite letters; why? Because it takes ‚ÄúSO LONG‚ÄĚ for them to be delivered that the information contained within may no longer be of importance. Why write a letter when we can text, IM, blog, or tweet and instantly gain a response, seek approval or voice an opinion?¬†

The personal side of human discourse is a bit lost in translation when it comes to utilizing technology as the only means of communication.¬† While it remains hard to “read” a person’s tone in a written letter just as it is in texts, chats and emails, at least there is still the personal side; knowing that someone took the time to sit down and write you a note expressing well wishes, thoughts and concerns without including acronyms for anything and everything from LOL to IDK to whatever heck else is used as substitutions means something.¬†

I remember being so excited to receive hand-written letters in the mail when in college and younger. While I am extremely thankful for all that technology allows us to do and the numerous ways it allows us to communicate, wouldn’t it be wonderful to get something in the mail other than bills that need paid?

Would you like to receive a letter in the mail?

I’d probably do a happy dance if I got a letter in the mail from a friend! I kid you not! 

Kids today (Ughhh!¬† I can’t believe I just said that.¬† Swore I never would after hearing my pap say it! ) have not a clue how to write a letter, let alone address an envelope.¬† And let’s be honest, why should they?¬† Is the art of writing a letter lost and thrown to the wayside only to be substituted with text messages?¬† What are we teaching our future leaders?¬†

Personally….

I’m no better at this than the rest.¬† I too am guilty of not WRITING letters to anyone. With the exception of Christmas cards and¬†the tiny greeting and obligatory sentiments¬†thrown in, I don’t do much by way of hand-written correspondence.¬† Perhaps receiving cards in the mail is yet another reason I love Christmas so very much.¬† It’s the one time of year I have more correspondence in the mail than I do bills!¬† I am absolutely going to do something to change that as I had¬† included items on¬†the list to mail cards to¬†people¬†for no reason.¬†¬†¬†Don’t be surprised if you end up with a little note saying hello for no reason at all.¬† I don’t want anything in return… except maybe that you return the favor to someone else.

Patience….

Practice patience in your everyday life.¬† I’m trying my best to do so.¬† Instant isn’t everything.¬† What is there left worth waiting for if you can get everything and experience everything instantaneously?¬† Take a deep breath; relax a little; have patience; be patient.

Use¬†what God gave you… Write a letter; send¬†a card; leave a note for your spouse or child.¬† Try it instead of sending a text or emailing.¬† See what¬†kind of result you have… you just may be surprised at the reaction.¬†

When was the last time you received a letter in the mail?  When was the last time you sent a letter in the mail?