S/V Liza Jane & Friends

Monday, November 14, 2011

favorite photos from recent months

Halloween 2011

This year for Halloween Morgan wanted to go as Shaun the Sheep, and Maeve is very interested in princesses, so I was able to talk her into going as Princess Diana (rather than a fictional princess).

At our annual playgroup gathering at a local pumpkin farm

Shaun the Sheep has a go on the tractor

Tired kids after Trick-or-Treating in our new neighborhood

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Maeve Casey Turns Three

Well, here we are three years after the birth of our amazing, laughing little girl who introduces herself to people as "Maevey." We call her Maevers, Maevey Jones, Sweet Pea...and her Spanish-speaking friends call her--much to my amusement and delight--Mabe, or Maybe.

Maeve at three: she has always loved her stuffed animals and rarely leaves the house or goes to sleep without an "amminal."  When she finds a new amminal she wants to have, she cocks her head and says things like, "Aww, it's so sweet!  Mama, look at how cute it is!"

She dances expressively when telling stories, waving arms and standing on tiptoes as she excitedly tells her Papa about her day. Nearly every day, she turns on music so she can do her "ballet" on the living room rug, which she calls her "Lonnie-Con Stage." I have no idea what that means, but she's been calling it that for a year or more, and heaven forbid Morgan should fly his remote-control helicopter over her Lonnie-Con Stage while she's using it!

Maeve is becoming a little fish just like her brother--in three short weeks she has gone from complete refusal to dunk her head or even get water in her eyes, to attempts to dive for toys and insistence that she can swim on her own and that I should wait for her near the wall while she shows me.  And she can, too! She puts her head right in, kicks her legs wildly and flings her arms around her head, then resurfaces with a beaming smile on her face that can leave no doubt as to how proud she feels.

Maeve has lots of friends, but there are a few girls with whom she is particularly close.  It's such a delight to see her growing up with these girls, moving through different phases of play with them.  A year ago they all played "Sick Kitty Cats" for months, in which one of them was the vet and the others were sick cats who needed tending to. Now they like to get into dress-up clothes and dance together, or they play in the toy kitchen, making each other eggs and vegetables. Their conversations are pure gold--I love to hear them explaining how the world is according to them.  

Maeve has added amusing adult-like expressions to her speech lately.  One I particularly enjoyed recently was when I was making tea for her friend Echo. "Maeve, would you like some tea too?" I asked. "No," she replied, "I'm good."  When she tells a story about someone making a face or gesture, she uses the ubiquitous phrase, "She was like [makes face or gesture]."  She once asked me if she could have gum and when I told her we didn't have any, she responded with, "We-e-elllll, I could have one piece, at least, right?" while vigorously nodding in agreement with herself.  

One of Morgan's favorite Maeve moments was when she asked me if she could "sleep in the bed tonight." I told her that of course she could (as if we usually  make her sleep in the basement!) and she said enthusiastically "Thank you, Mama.  You're so sweet!"

I'll end this post by saying that life with Maeve is joyful, funny, challenging, and beautiful. 

We love you so much, Maevey. 


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Monday, October 03, 2011

Mama's Coffee Habit

At 8:30 last night as we were all driving home from visiting friends in Santa Rosa, I stopped at a little out-of-the-way strip mall to get a coffee from Starbucks. When I walked up to the door, however, I discovered that the shop had already closed for the evening. "Why would it be closed?" asked Morgan incredulously.

"Because it's a hole in the wall," replied Casey.

After Casey explained what he meant by that expression, Maeve suggested casually, "Why don't we go to a different cookie store? How about Peet's?"

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

vignettes from the life of a nearly three-year-old

Maeve wears a fancy dress and a jaguar-spotted cape. "I'm Princess Kate!" she tells me.

Morgan, wearing nothing but a fleece blanket secured around his neck, adds: "...and I'm her assistant, Batman. Together, we save the world!"

"SAVE THE WORLD!!" Maeve shouts.


Maeve and her good friend Echo are playing with the toy kitchen, pretending to be mother and child. Echo says to Maeve, "Here's your dinner, honey. Here's your beer, and here's your shampoo, and here's your salt. I'm gonna make it really really spicy for you."

She hands Maeve various props, to which Maeve replies, "Thank you, Mom! You're so sweet!"

Echo then pours from a bottle, telling Maeve, "Now you can have an oil drink. It's really super, super..." She pauses, searching for the right descriptor. "...oiled."

Maeve picks up her glass and begins to inform her "mother" that she isn't allowed to drink beer, being a young girl. But then her glass slips, and she cries out, "Oh no! My beer spilled! Noooo!"


Maeve and Isa are riding home in my car from their co-op Sweetie Pies. Isa is absolutely rhapsodic about the dress and shoes she recently wore to her aunt's wedding. "These are my wedding shoes, aren't they pretty? They're gold and they stay on my feet because there's a strap here across the top! And my wedding dress, I love my wedding dress. It was so beautiful I couldn't believe my eyes!"

Maeve sighs heavily and hangs her head. She seems to be speaking about a general malady when she says in a forlorn voice, "I can't believe my eyes, either."

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Tough Questions from Morgan

Tonight when he was supposed to be going to sleep, Morgan was busy thinking. He insisted, between yawns, that he was not in fact tired. He snapped his fingers--a recently acquired skill--and wrestled with his bedclothes. He sang songs to himself, and went over in a whisper the steps used to form some of the upper-case letters he's been learning at Occupational Therapy.

"Mama," he asked, "are Huckle and Lowly and their friends real?"
"No, they're cartoons."
"Oh. 'Cause I wish that Huckle was my twin brother, and Lowly was our other brother, and Huckle's sister was our little sister. Then I could play with them all the time."
"Yes, that would be nice. Close your eyes, now."

For a few minutes he adjusted his sheets, asking me each time to re-apply his blankie (it has to be flat, cold, and laid just so on his chest). Then, apropos of nothing, he began a new line of questioning:

"I don't really understand how you can choose when you have a baby and when you don't. How does a mama do that?"
"Well," I stalled. "Um. You can keep the sperm and the egg from meeting each other. Because the egg and the sperm have to meet to start growing a baby, remember?"
"Yeah. But I mean, when the sperm comes out of Papa's penis. How come you can't just say what you want?" he went on.
"I'm not sure I know what you're asking," I said.
"Why can't you just say what you want? Because I really would love to have Huckle as my brother."

Trying not to laugh, I explain about how humans can't make cat babies and why. And I remind him, again, that Huckle is just a cartoon. He seems to get it, remembering that babies are made of instructions from the mama and instructions from the papa, and that both Casey and I are decidedly not feline and cannot pass on any cat instructions.

"Well," he says, "what about Lowly?"

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Musical Maeve

To the tune of It's Raining, It's Pouring: "I'm nakey, I'm nakey, I'm really really nakey!"

"Baa baa, black sheep, have you any wolf? Yes sir, yes sir, three bags full. One for the yes sir, one for the dame..."

Singing along with Michael Jackson's song Leave Me Alone: "Baby alone! Baby alo-o-one!"

She says her favorite song is one that goes "I love you, I love you, I really love you." "And ABC and twinkle twinkle." She makes up her own songs constantly; today I heard her singing a song about a puppy. "I love puppies, I really want a puppy. Someday when I'm big maybe I will have a puppy. I love you, puppy, I love you!"

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Daredevil McMullen Boys

Morgan and Casey ride the gravity zip line at Camp Augusta family camp. We had an amazing weekend there with friends!

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Maeve and Morgan are in their carseats, and are supposed to be falling asleep now. Instead, they're hiding under their fleece blankets and playing hide-and-seek as if there was any question where the hider will be found. Morgan hides his head under the blanket and Maeve counts: "One, two, three...ten, eleven, eighteen, sixteen, you're welcome, twelve! Ready or not, here I come!"

After Morgan has fallen asleep, Maeve is wide awake and chatting, singing, rearranging her blanket. Soon, she tells me she wants Morgan to wake up. "Because, I love him! I want to play with him more. He's my best friend!" she says, in tears.