Blog o' Graysmiths

Babbling and Big Love April 28, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — graysmiths @ 1:27 am

Rosemary has started babbling “mamamamamamamamamama” in earnest these days.  I can’t decide if she knows what that means and is trying to get my attention/express her love or if she just enjoys hearing the sound of her own voice (I wonder where she would get that from?)  Still, it is sweet music to a mama’s ears to hear that coming out of her baby’s mouth.

There is a lot of big love going on at the Graysmith house these days.  Atticus is enamored of his little sister and enjoys nothing more than giving her the biggest hugs possible.  Of course, being three times her weight, and not terribly aware of where his body is or what it is doing with regard to others means a lot of intervention on the part of the parental units.  “Not around the head” is a phrase that is used with alarming frequency.   Atticus is also very concerned about Rosemary’s teething pain and tries to help her out by letting her use his fingers as a teething ring.  This would be is sweet, especially when his hands are actually clean and not caked in dirt/food/who knows what, as they are around 90% of the time.


Riding the rails

Filed under: Uncategorized — graysmiths @ 12:40 am

This weekend we traveled to the North Carolina Transportation Museum in Spencer, North Carolina for their Annual Rail Days. It was a wonderful adventure for Atticus. He got to ride on:

  • the Norfolk & Western No. 620 diesel locomotive pulling air conditioned passenger cars
  • the Beaufort and Morehead #1860 diesel locomotive (he rode in the cab itself)
  • a Motor Car
  • a handcar (remember Oh Brother Where Are Thou?)
  • the railroad turntable
  • the Flagg Steam Locomotive No. 75 pulling the Caboose Train

Needless to say, for train nerds like us, it was pretty amazing. They also had a number of model train layouts which resulted in many glazed over expressions on the part of my son. In addition to the pictures posted on our flickr site, you can watch this video of the steam engine caboose train that Atticus and Luke rode – you can even see them waving to the camera at the end:

Rosemary had a wonderful time as well – she did great with all the loud noises and even managed to get a nap in the ergo for about half an hour.  I wonder if she will be train obsessed like her big brother…maybe it is time to get that membership to the museum!


Hula boy April 27, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — graysmiths @ 9:53 pm

Atticus, Rosemary and I went to the Shakori Hills music festival last weekend. In addition to seeing wonderful music, storytelling and lots of friends, Atticus got to hula hoop, one of his favorite activities. Here are some pictures…

As usual, once he saw his friends, he was off and away – I have to enjoy all the mama love I get these days since I know it won’t be long before I’m packing his bags for college 😉


Book Report No. 4: The Search for a Chapter Book. April 18, 2008

Filed under: Book Reports — graysmiths @ 6:01 pm

I’m having a very, very difficult time finding a new chapter book for Atticus. Halfway through Stuart Little, he became very upset during the boat race and decided he didn’t want to read anymore. I picked up copies of The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo and Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder, but decided that neither of these will work. The first is just too scary for Atticus – a mama dies, a little girl’s father sells her into servitude and of course, there are the numerous details about the deep, dark dungeon. And although I love Little House in many ways for its depiction of a simpler time and place, the in-depth description of killing and eating animals (the entire first chapter is devoted to this subject) is just not suitable for our primarily-vegetarian family. Right now, I’m trying to encourage empathy with animals, not give examples of how useful they can be when dead.

I’ll continue my search, and welcome suggestions….


Watch out mama!

Filed under: Uncategorized — graysmiths @ 5:51 pm

Finally, after what seems like months of drooling and gumming everything, Rosemary’s first tooth has broken through.  And it is incredibly sharp!  Now I know where Lemony Snicket got his inspiration for Sonny.  I remember Atticus’ teeth as being unpleasant, yes, but not quite like the thorn that has appeared in his sister’s mouth.  Not to mention that his teeth waited until the seventh month before making their appearance.

Next step, will be food – I wonder if Rosemary will be as enthusiastic as her brother?


Weekend Away April 3, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — graysmiths @ 4:04 pm

We spent the past weekend visiting Washington DC and enjoying the gracious hospitality of Diane and Scott Douglas, and their two boys, Malcolm and Philip. We ate at the National Musuem of the American Indian (delicious, but expensive) and walked through the exhibits. My favorite was the section on creation stories- Atticus really enjoyed hearing these. I think his favorite was the representation of the milky way galaxy in LEDs on the ceiling of one of the exhibits. My biggest complaint was that I didn’t feel as if I got a sense of the history and evolution of native groups, probably an overwhelming task for any one institution.

On Saturday we went back to the mall for the Smithsonian Kite Flying Festival.   Here are some photos:


It was a great weekend – the whole drive back Atticus kept saying he wanted to return to DC “right now.”  Thanks Scott and Diane!


Letting Them Go April 2, 2008

Filed under: Nature — graysmiths @ 2:31 am

The weather was warm last week and since I wasn’t sure the butterflies would survive our weekend away (visiting friends in DC), I asked, then begged, then basically cajoled Atticus into letting his butterflies go free. He was devastated, and I am not overstating this one bit. He cried for at least 1/2 an hour, and still, if you mention it, will say “let’s just not talk about my butterflies.” I told him the story of Mother Bear and the Robin from Little Bear, but it did not sway his heart. He loved holding his butterflies and misses them daily, if not hourly. A few pictures: