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Sammy and Elijah are usually pretty easily entertained but sometimes we try to get creative to keep playtime exciting. For Sammy, that sometimes involves socks going on his hands, various degrees of nakedness, and dancing.

We have set our Little People farm and circus up on a coffee table that is just Sammy’s height, and he spends a lot of time arranging and rearranging the animals. It’s very cute.

Eli is becoming more active with his toys and now hits or grabs hanging toys when laying underneath them.

It seems like not too long ago that I was eating a delicious free cookie while my mom did her Krogering and now I’m the mommy with a little boy slowly enjoying his sugar cookie as I shop. Amazing.

We took a stab at some homemade pizza a few weeks ago, and we decided to have a contest to see who could make the best pie. Sammy and Charlie won hands down since my pizza stuck to the counter and became a huge calzone that was kind of gross.

Chef Sammy

Waiting patiently

And then the party!!!

Sammy’s vocabulary has been growing so quickly in the past few weeks that I wanted to post a list to help me remember how much he could say at 18 months.

big bird
bye (that’s usually shouted when he’s at home)
woah (when he does something to surprise himself)
ba ba (a bottle or a cup)
hi (he says that to Eli in the sweetest voice)
eat eat
ball (these three sound pretty similar, but we can distinguish between them)
baby (this is one of his best words–anyone would know when he’s saying it)
all done
all gone
***Daddy’s Note***
He also says:
and peek-a-boo!

I think there are a few more, but that’s all I can remember at the moment. He also does a variety of animal and vehicle noises:

moo (his newest)
oo-oo ah-ah (monkey)
woof woof
choo choo
bbbbrrrmm bbbrrrmmm (car sounds he makes as he drives them over all surfaces of the living room)
rrroar! (tiger or lion)
ha ha (a hyena in one of his favorite zoo books)

I took some pictures of Eli when he turned 3 months old earlier this month, but then got sick and haven’t had the energy to post them. So, here’s our littlest cutie pie!

Isn’t he getting big (and amazingly cute)?? You can see more in the gallery.

In the next few days, I’ll be posting pics of some fun times the boys and I have around here while Daddy’s working!

The polls are open all day in Roanoke today, and I still haven’t decided how I’m going to cast my vote. Do I:

A. Vote Obama to help ensure his victory over Hillary?
B. Throw another log on McCain’s fire to irritate my neocon friends?
C. Be true to my heart and vote for the man I’ve been supporting since day one, Mike Gravel?

I’m a big fan of Gravel, but short of a freak multiple-plane accident that kills pretty much every other candidate he doesn’t have a chance. Plus he isn’t on the ballot in Virginia, so I’m torn.

Whatever happens, I love you Mike!

Just a quick note for those of you wondering what’s going on in Roanoke: There was some very strong wind in our area yesterday and as a result a lot (80,000) people are without power right now. The damage also caused quite a few fires in the area and some folks out in Bedford have had to evacuate their homes. A section of 81 was shut down temporarily because of the smoke, some traffic lights are out and there have been an unusual number of traffic accidents throughout the city.

Our house lost power yesterday afternoon and when it had not returned by 8pm we decided to head over to a friends house to spend the night. Evidently there were so many people without heat that the Red Cross opened up a shelter in the civic center. The news is reporting that power should return by Tuesday night, Wednesday at the latest.

There are definitely both pros and cons to having two kids as close together in age as Sammy and Eli. One of the cons is that right now we have two little boys and only one crib. Eli has been sleeping in a basinet by our bed, but it’s time for him to graduate to the crib in his own room. Consequently, it’s time for Sammy to graduate to a toddler bed, or “big boy bed” as we’ve been calling it.

We heard that this can be a particularly difficult transition for a little guy to make, so we looked around for a bed that would make it as fun and exciting for Sammy as possible. He’s a big fan of Elmo (or ee-mo, as he calls him), so we settled on The Sesame Street Toddler Bed featuring the man himself in big bold colors. Unfortunately for us every other kid in the world seems to be in love with Elmo too so it was difficult to find one in stock. In fact, the only place we could get our hands on one at all was at Wal-mart, and we hate Wal-mart. As you may already know, Wal-mart abuses it’s employees and rapes the local economy and we’ve been unofficially boycotting it for the last year or so. Desperate time call for desperate measures though, and being a parent means making sacrifices. We ordered the bed through Wal-mart and one month, ten emails, one return, and a half a dozen miserable phone calls to customer service later we had a bed. It took me a couple hours to put it together because the instructions were clearly written by a non-english speaker and the accompanying hardware must have been meant for some other fine product, because not one bolt fit into the hole to which it was assigned.

It all felt worthwhile though when Sammy saw it. His eyes widened, he pointed at it, looked up and me and said “Whoa!” He spent all morning getting in and out of it and pointing at Elmo. When naptime finally came I tucked him in and set up a baby gate at his bedroom door. He cried for a few minutes but then quickly fell asleep. He didn’t even set a foot on the floor, so in our estimation it was a success.

In order to see exactly what went on after I put Sammy down for his nap I set up a video camera ahead of time. Below is the footage from when I left the room until he fell asleep. It’s about four minutes long and it’s pretty uneventful, all he does is cry and flop around a little, but I thought his grandparents might enjoy it. (the beginning is a little messed up, give it a second to get going)

Sammy showing off some of his best moves.

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