Tuesday, April 28, 2009

April Fun

Our return from the Creeper....Poor Hunter and Chloe had Creeper Trail dust bunnies all over their faces! It looked like they both had a hand in eating the trail.
This is Mrs. Glenda!! Hunter LOVES her. She is one of his preschool teachers and he will do anything with her. She is fantistic, funny and full of energy. In this pic he is exploring the preschool's Earth Day activities.
Hunter and Mrs. Glenda. I think she is going to have to move up to the 2 year old class with him this fall.
Isn't this sweet?
This was Chloe's Creeper Trail look!
Our first set of scraped knees! He fell on the driveway running after me because I wouldn't let him sit in the truck...by himself.
Hunter loves to help push the cart. It is really sweet, but it is hard when you are in a hurry. He wants to push it around in the store too...that is the complicated part. Talk about a long shopping trip.

Both of these 2 pics are Hunter having fun at the Hands on Museum in Johnson City. Of course he is driving the car and the tractor.
We go to storytime at the library every Tuesday. Hunter loves to play on the computer afterwards..it is the ONLY one I will let him touch.
Fun at the farm!

Last but not least....CHICKEN RUN!!!

Despite having an ear infection for the past 3 weeks, Hunter has been in a pretty good mood and has tolerated all of our crazy adventures. Over Easter we were in Sparta where he had a fabulous time chasing chickens around a farm. A neighbor up the road has a great big farm complete with milking cows, goats, pigs and chickens, just to name a few. Since it is spring time most of the animals had little babies so we thought Hunter would love to see all the animals and their new little babies. Those of you who really know Hunter, understand that he is a quite, reserved little boy that doesn't usually want out of his mother's arms in any sort of new situation...at least for a good 15 minutes of warming up and observation. Well, he amazed us all when he scrambled right out of the truck and took off running (as fast as little toddlers can run) toward a flock of chickens and roosters! We couldn't believe it and we were all laughing hysterically as he desperately tried to catch one. He never did catch one but Ms. Collette was kind enough to let Hunter help feed them so that allowed him brief touches of their feathers! He also enjoyed petting and watching the goats. On the other hand, Hunter wanted nothing to do with the 5 screaming piglets Ms. Collette was raising. They were wild and really loud and I think all the comotion just scared him. Overall, he had the most fun chasing the chickens!
David and I have been working in the yard and have things looking really good. We have spread 32 bales of pine needles around the house and 6 loads of mulch. I wish I could say we were done, but I am afraid we are going to need one more load of mulch to finish off our outside landscaping fiasco. It has been hard work, but we have really enjoyed spending the time outside and Hunter loves to play in the dirt. As soon as the load of mulch was delivered, Hunter ran and got his shovel. Poor kid, we make him work hard to earn his keep around here.
Right now Hunter is growing so fast and doing new things everyday. He still loves cars and any car will do. Today we even had a picnic in the truck!! I really wanted a picnic in the yard, but Hunter insisted we eat in the truck, so we did! His loves his fourwheeler and has gotten really good at turning it. He rides it everyday for hours around the yard and I have to remind myself everynight to charge the battery. He gets very upset if it 'runs out of gas.' He doesn't really play with toys that much. He has a train table and will play with it some, but his favorite toys are matchbox cars. He makes little car noieses and runs them all over the place. He still loves to read and of lately he wants to read the same books over and over and over and over again. His vocabulary is picking up, but he is still a quite fellow. As of today his words include, moma, dada, hot, moo, quack, track (which he says for both tractor and truck), right back, uh-oh, and I think he said moon tonight. He has no trouble understanding every word we say, but I do wonder if all his ear troubles have affected his speech. We went to ENT today, and if this antibiotic doesn't do the trick then we are looking at having tubes placed. Keep your fingers crossed and I will keep all posted.
This past weekend Jenny and Chloe came up for a visit. Hunter and Chloe have a great time playing together and I really do wish we could get the two of them together more often. The weather was beautiful so we played outside all day. We all went for a bike ride on the Creeper Trail. I trailered Hunter and Chloe in the go bug for a ride into Abingdon. We stopped and let them play at the park near the start of the trail. Jenny was a good sport and rode the bike really well....we had no wrecks or close calls!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

easter eggs!

Abby and Ibis have learned to stay pretty close to Hunter at all times. He usually is a crumb dropper. In this pic we are done dying eggs and Hunter is dissecting one into a million pieces. The dogs are just helpful scavengers!

This has been the craziest weather day ever! On Sunday, Hunter and I enjoyed a nice run together on the Creeper Trail in shorts, it was around 80 degrees and sunny. Today, it has snowed off and on all day. Thank goodness the only accumulation is on the trees, but it is still really cold. I think we managed a daily high in the mid 30's. It snowed harder today than I have seen it snow all winter. It looked like a white thunderstorm outside! I think the rest of the week will be warmer...at least I hope. Hunter and I have so much more fun when we can go exploring outside.

Now, despite the weather, I must give a big shot out to my Carolina boys!! Yahoo, NCAA Champions!!! We are sort of a house divided being the David went to WFU and I to UNC for graduate school. Hunter is getting pulled in all directions, but as most of you know, Hunter is a big fan of mommy, so I think he will be a future Tarheel. We will also pull for the Deacons, except when they play UNC!!!

Since it has been such a yucky day we have had to be very creative with some cool things to do inside. I thought it would be great fun to dye Easter eggs. It was a lot of fun and Hunter loved it. It managed to keep him entertained for about an hour, which in toddler world is a really, really, really, did I say really long time! It was also a great big mess, but he had fun and so did I do I didn't mind cleaning and cleaning and cleaning. He also thought it was loads of fun to smash the eggs into million pieces with his tools (see first pic!). I guess this is just part of being a little boy. We had a good day!

My little Tyler! Go Heels!!
He worked and worked on this egg. It was such a mess and really stinky. He never tried to eat one. He just wanted to smash them all up.
Our table after the fact. Out of 2 dozen eggs I think I managed to keep him from cracking around 8. The 3 in the bowl we the first saved...all the rest---cracked or smashed.
The first victim.
Then he thought it was great to hide under his table. I think he liked the table cloth hanging over the sides. He did have all his tractors under there!
Working hard at figuring out how to do this.
He was really good at using the egg dipper thingy. He never used his hands, just the dipper. I was surprised and proud of these fine motor skills!
Poor little guy just had another haircut and it just sticks up all over the place until it grow out a little!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Wow, I think this has been the longest delay I have ever had since beginning my blogging adventure. I will try a little harder to keep things updated, but with the weather getting warmer, the Simmons family is ALWAYS outside!! I really don't know what we have been up to for the last month. We have had a couple of trips home to visit with family, but other than that we have enjoyed our fun little daily routines here. We are fast approaching our one year anniversary of living in Abingdon and I think we have all adjusted nicely. We officially have a truck, and of recent a yard tractor (more on that later!), a new garden, lots of little people and big people friends. We really like it here so I guess we might hang out in the area a little while longer!
Right now Hunter is almost 20 months old. He is growing up so fast and it is really hard to believe he is going to be 2! We have started Kindermusik and Hunter and I both really enjoy the class and our teacher, Mr. Lyndsey. Hunter is shy and slow to warm up to most all situations, so after the first couple of classes he shook off the shyness and is now doing ring around the roses all by himself. We do all kinds of fun things in music class, including dancing, singing and playing with fun instruments. Hunter really likes the egg shakers and balls the best! His vocabulary has expanded from mommy, dada, and hot to include quack, baa and moo. He has also figured out that shaking his head left to right means "no." Such an easy word, yet he refuses to say it and when I ask him to say it he just shakes his head, "no." He is on a clapping strike at the moment and every time I ask him to clap his hands, you guessed it, he shakes his head no and laughs. Funny little boy!
Our big purchase for the month of March has been a mower, aka a 'lawn tractor.' For those of you who have seen our yard, we have a really big yard to mow and a very steep yard to mow. So according to David, our tractor expert, we needed a big mower with four wheel drive. You guessed it again, we now have this great big Kuboda mower that has four wheel drive. I really don't know who enjoys it the most, David or Hunter. I also enjoy having the mower. We would wait for weeks last summer for the guys to come and mow it and it was so hard for Hunter and I to walk around in and I was always afraid of snakes. We actually saw 2 in the yard, but thanks to Abby and Ibis those snakes are history! It is nice to know that we don't have to wait forever to get the grassed mowed.

It is hard to tell in this picture, but one of our projects has been to relandscape around the bottom of our driveway. It was lots of fun and hard work and Hunter loved it. His favorite part was looking for worms in the dirt! He was such a trooper while David and I worked, he even helped move all the rocks...although he would do just about anything for a ride on the mower!
Another outside project, my garden. I am so excited! I hope I can keep the deer away. We may have to put up a fence. I am trying to get the soil just right, it is too early to plant anything around here. They are actually calling for snow the next couple of days and I am really bummed about it. The lovely trees in the background were planted by my darling husband and son. Didn't they do a good job?
Our friend Adam. We helped him celebrate his 2nd birthday. Hunter loved the train table!
Here it is....the mower of our dreams! I think they have already put on about100 miles! Pretty soon when the weather gets warmer they may be driving it to town!
Hunter really likes to help me cook, especially bake! In this pic we caught him tasting the icing. He loved it of course!
Uncle David being a great sport and entertaining in the freezing cold!
Papa's tractor.
We took Hunter golfing for the first time and it was great. I didn't think he would last more than 3 holes, but we managed to play 6 before we needed to break for lunch and naptime. We took his clubs (all 2 of them...a putter and a driver) and let him play. He actually sank a 15 foot putt. We were so proud. The highlight of the day was riding and help driving the fabulous golf cart. We might could play 18 as long as we have the cart!

If you have a toddler and it suddenly gets really quiet in the house you need to go and search for them! Hunter found the pasta and thought the sound and feel of it crackling under his feet was irresistible! We let him crunch around in it for awhile so it was easier to vacuum up!