Friday, December 25, 2009

An Arboretum Christmas Card

An Arboretum Christmas Card from Brad Herring on Vimeo.

Happy Holidays to all! We hope you enjoy our digital holiday card that we filmed it at the JC Raulston Arboretum in Raleigh on Christmas Eve.

Brad, Tia & Maya

Monday, November 30, 2009

On your mark, get set, go!

Late fall and early winter always means one thing - leaves, leaves and more leaves everywhere! We spent a good part of Sunday morning raking leaves and piling them up around the swing set for jumping and frolicking. We placed a large pile of them at the base of the blue slide for a softer landing. As you can see, I can get some speed and even some air on this slide. So...

On your mark, get set, go!

I lost count, but I must have gone down the slide over a hundred times!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

An Uninvited Guest

For the past few months we have had lovely visitors grace our doorstep which has been a lot of fun however, two weeks ago the flu entered our home. We did not invite this sickness guest into our home and I am glad that it is on the way out and we are all feeling a lot better! The flu tests came back negative on me but my doctor is sure I had some kind of para-flu which is basically a virus that acts like the flu but it not classified. Whatever it was, it was bad and we all got it! Mom is still blowing her nose like a trumpet!

I had a raging fever but we were getting cabin fever so it was good to get out and get some fresh air and collect some fall leaves. Even though we were sick Mom was still busy planning all kinds of fall projects. Next post will highlight some of the fun! Stay tuned!

Hunting for the perfect pink and red leaves.

Drawing with some leaves...this picture doesn't make me look sick at all!

Resting in a leaf pile.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Happy Halloween Everybody!

Wow! I love Halloween! We had an action packed day and night filled with some exciting highlights. We started out at a Healthy Moms gathering where we brought our homemade magic pretzel wands to share. Then we headed over to the Museum of Natural Sciences to enter a costume competition and see all the live animals. And we topped off the night with some trick-or-treating with friends. We packed in a bunch of photos to this post, Enjoy!

Homemade butterfly wings made from coat hangers and old stockings. We worked together applying the glitter.

Having my face painted butterfly style at the Museum.

All the trick-or-treaters getting fortified for the big night by eating some pizza.

Now what was I supposed to do with this ghost bag that we made?

Wonder Woman showing me the way (notice I took my wings off? By the end of the night I was in a t-shirt and tights and folks were asking what had happened to my costume! Well it was 70 degrees that night!)

Organizing and categorizing all the loot. Later that night once we got home we left my candy at the door for the Switch Witch, who took the candy and exchanged it for 2 great books this morning.

Enjoying a Tootsie Pop acquired at the very first house (waiting all the way to have this until the end of the night was torture!).

Time to make my cocoon.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Quote of the day

Maya was sitting on the floor playing and singing while Mom was getting breakfast ready and she came up with the following song and she has been singing it all day long.

Maya: Ring around the Rosie, Pocket full of Posie, Ashes and We all fall down and break our pelvis.

Mom (laughing hysterically): I love the new words to your song Maya!

We both start laughing.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Maya's Singing Debut

Maya's Singing Debut from Brad Herring on Vimeo.

I had to shoot some video for my class I'm taking at Duke that focuses on audio. I wanted to break out one of my new microphones and I thought Maya would be a good test.

She needed absolutely no coaching as she started singing before I could even hit record.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Everything’s Homemade

Now that Mom is home with me everyday we are having a lot of fun cooking and crafting. Mom says she loves this time of year because of all the cooking possibilities with pumpkins, squash and sweet potatoes. So far we have made pumpkin muffins, pumpkin sweet bread, pumpkin yeast bread, pumpkin seed snacks and pumpkin squash pancakes (We are Forest Gump with pumpkins!). We have also made an eggplant quiche, cabbage strudel, homemade pizza, venison vegetable stew and onion poppy seed bread. Mom and I have been going crazy in the kitchen! It is fun to go through the grocery store and think, why buy that when we can try to make it at home! I have become quite an eater too. If I had a hand in making it I am for sure going to gobble it down! Oh I have also taken to making my own cooking creations out in the back yard as well. My new cooking favorite is acorn soup.

We bought a few small pumpkins at the Farmers Market last week and Mom thought it would be fun to paint them. Mom produced these cool little paints and I went to town trying each color on the pumpkins. Mom drew a face on one of the pumpkins but I decided that splashing the paint everywhere on the pumpkin was more fun.

Painting the pumpkins.

Cleaning the brushes with Bubble Water in the kitchen sink.

Finished pumpkins in the table centerpiece.

Mom has also been doing a lot of card making with her Stampin’ Up supplies. She is hoping to start teaching card making classes next month so she tested out a mom and child class with me. We made cool Sesame Street cards together and I got to punch out all the images and then draw on them. It was fun and now I have thank you notes to use!

My card creations.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Quote of the Day

Overheard at the table while climbing down from her chair after eating lunch:

Maya: "I am going to jump down, Mom."

Mom: "OK, jump down Maya."

Maya: "Maya no break pelvis like MiMa!"

Maya jumps!

Maya (after jump): "Ooh, I jumped. I broke pelvis. Need ambulance."

Maya to Mom: "Momma drive!"

And then a bonus picture. She'll most likely hate us down the road for posting this one but she dressed herself!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

No work for Mommy!

First let me start off by saying that our family is finally back together again! The reason we have not posted in a while is that Mom and I have been in NY for the last month. It was so awesome to see Dad again and I just hugged him constantly and said, "This is my Daddy" for three days straight!

Now on to the title, No work for Mommy! This is my morning statement nearly every morning lately. Mom and I have been having a blast together ever since she left her job and it has been really awesome to spend so much time together. We have been playing outside everyday and I have been able to reconnect with all of my outdoor critter friends such as beetles and worms...I really missed my beetles while we were away! We have also been cooking up a storm and I have become quite an eater! I usually like to eat anything that I have helped to make. Mom lets me sit on the counter and help with everything. This usually includes mashing something like squash or kneeding dough and getting covered in flour. I am really starting to enjoy cooking time in the kitchen!

I have also taken a huge liking to Bubble Water. This usually happens in the kitchen or bathroom sink and Mom lets me stand up on a chair at the sink and play with soapy bubble water. It is so much fun and I always talk about my friends Eleanor and Henry b/c they are the ones that taught us about Bubble Water when we were visiting them a few months ago. Speaking of favorite things to wear lately are Shoes! I love shoes (just like Mom) and I ask to wear Eleanors shoes nearly every day (she gave me some hand-me-down pink sneakers when we were visiting and I adore them even though they are 2 sizes too big for me!).

Other big developments include a language explosion and tumbles. I am speaking in full sentences and even paragraphs at times. Mom and Dad are always giggling at me and the things I come up with. Mostly everything I say can be clearly understood but if the listener doesn't understand I repeat and repeat getting louder each time until the listener finally figures out what I am trying to say. As for tumbles....I finally mastered the art of the forward roll. This happened while we were in NY and I performed a gymnastics routine that I put together nearly every day after I figured out the roll. Mom has had to set up soft mats in my room so I can do the tumbles at home and the coolest part is now I get to go to a gymnastics class once a week! Mom and Dad realized that "it was time" to let me show off my talent and get some coaching. They tell me at the gym that I am natural!

More pictures to come, our camera is having a panic attack!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Video Haiku

Termite Haiku from Brad Herring on Vimeo.

A video haiku for

5 seconds, 7 seconds, 5 seconds

Monday, August 24, 2009

Can Bubbles Cure a Broken Pelvis?

I sure think so!

About 2 weeks ago Mima slipped and fell while she was walking her dog and broke her pelvis in two places. So without hesitation, we packed up the car and headed back up to NY to be with her. She is doing great and recovering more and more each day. She'll leave rehab this Friday but will still need constant care for at least the next 4 weeks. Mom and I will stay up here and help take care of her while Dad will fly back home.

The video above was shot at the nursing rehab facility. We have been going over there everyday to be with Mima to "make her happy" as I like to say. Today, I took the bubbles and after rubbing them into my hands, I gently massaged it into her hurt leg. At the end of the video you can barely here me say "all better". I must have rubbed half of the bottle of bubbles on her leg before declaring her cured!

And if some of you are wondering how Mom is able to stay up in NY for the next 4 weeks without returning home, it's because she has left her job! Yes, that's right! She is now a full time stay-at-home Mom! I am SO excited. Yeah Mom!

Once we get Mima "all better" we'll return home and begin the art projects!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Sunshine Swing Set. Beetle Queen. Mando Maya.

Go grab some popcorn because it's movie time!!

Sunshine Swing Set from Brad Herring on Vimeo.

Maya is such a gem! Playing with her fills our day with so much joy. I wanted to make a movie that incorporated some new features on my camera. Why not practice them on Maya by following her around as she explores our yard and her new swing set.

When G. Love says "baby don't go", we think of it as "baby don't grow up"! Terrible twos or terrific twos? Who knows! We just know that we have a bundle of energy who is learning something new each and every day by exploring more and more and opening her mind through adventure. We're just trying to keep up!

A few have suggested that we include more videos without the music and more of just her talking and being herself. This video does that, the being herself part at least. She talks constantly but she also thinks most situations through without saying much. Here's Maya catching a beetle, making a habitat for it and then playing with it before letting it go back into the yard.

Beetle Queen from Brad Herring on Vimeo.

And finally, after a few hours outside on the swing set we come in for a little jam session. Ever since we saw Dan Zanes in concert she has been wanting to play our mandolin instead of her pink guitar. I adjusted the strap to fit her and away she went like a seasoned pro. Now all we need is a drummer and a guitar player. Oh, and Maya can most likely take the lead on vocals since she has a powerful set of lungs!

Mando Maya from Brad Herring on Vimeo.


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I scream, you scream, we all scream for...

The Ice Cream Truck!

Ever since our trip to New York and my introduction to ice cream from the Ice Cream Truck, it's all I think about. That night we signaled to the driver and he pulled over and passed out some delicious cones of soft serve ice cream. Let me tell you, I secured that hypnotic song from the ice cream truck into my memory and every night when the truck drove by I let everyone know what I wanted. We only had ice cream once during our 10 day stay. It was torture!

Even after being home for 3 weeks and not hearing the repetitive sounds from the ice cream truck I still ask for it. "Ice Cream Truck, Mom?" It has been non-stop begging and I have not been getting my way. That stopped when Mom and Dad had the idea to make homemade ice cream from our mountain of blueberries we have been collecting.

So we headed out to the back yard and picked 16 cups of blueberries. We cooked the berries, added the cream and then headed to the store to buy an ice cream maker attachment for our Kitchen Aide mixer.

I was so excited I could hardly stand it. And if you thought I said ice cream truck all the time then, just wait. It's all I want and it's all I talk about! On Sunday and Monday "Ice Cream Truck, Mom" were the first words out of my mouth when I woke up!

Our blueberries are finally plump and juicy enough to pick. We've been picking them for the last 2 weeks but they were still a little tart. We are in full swing now!

Mom and Dad finished the evening off making blueberry jam. We had so many berries that they were able to make 2 batches. I tested it out this morning and it was D-lish!

Ice Cream!


Saturday, July 25, 2009

Beetles and Bees

I had my first bump in the rode today in my quest to catch all the critters in our backyard. I've gotten really good at catching beetles as they don't scurry away like the lizards do. This morning I captured a June Bug and let him ride along on my shirt for most of the morning putting him in my habitat bucket for closer observation. I gave him some rocks, grass and mulch to climb around on. After a while we let him go back to his real habitat in the woods.

While filling up a glass of imaginary lemonade from the screw at the bottom of the swing set I attempted to capture a yellow jacket. The yellow jacket must have sensed that I had lemonade in my cup. After trying to catch him I realized he wasn't the friendly kind. Dad was sitting next to me but did not see the bee until I turned and started asking for help. I patiently waited while Dad grabbed the bee with his fingers and then started to pull the stinger out of my pinky finger.

Amazingly, I didn't cry. I just yelled for Mom to come and put milk on it. As Mom put breast milk on my finger I just sat there and "oohed and awed" as the pain and swelling intensified. After a few minutes of ice I was ready to go back out. Mom and Dad were a little more scared than I was since they are both allergic to bees. So far, so good. My finger is still swollen but that is to be expected.

A little extra chubbiness

Pinky finger comparison

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Pink Guitar

For my birthday back in May Mom and Dad promised me my very own guitar. They seem to get a little nervous when I want to play their Martin Classical or their Mandolin. For at least 2 weeks straight, I relentlessly begged Mom and Dad to let me play their guitar and mandolin. But after seeing the way I carelessly held them in my tiny hands they decided that I needed my own.

So off to the store we went. Dad had wanted to get me a ukulele since he thought it would be better suited for my body size. I wanted nothing to do with the ukuleles after setting my eyes on this pink guitar! I wanted it so bad that I grabbed for it without asking for help and suddenly found myself on the floor with a bump on my head and the guitar on top of me.

I have been playing it ever since we brought it home about two months ago! And if you ask me what I want to do when I grow up I say "play guitar"! I am completely fascinated with the instrument. If I see one, whether in person or in art, I want to hold it and strum it. I still don't understand why I can't play them all??

Below are some of our pictures from the Dan Zanes concert. Apparently, Stella Dot has started to play the drums so we may be on to something here. We'll be sure to videotape our first concert!

Headed down to get front row seats before the show

Observing from the second row

Gaining insight for our first band

Front and Center

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Rockin' it at Dan Zanes

Last night we headed over to the NC Museum of Art to see Dan Zanes and Friends. We packed a picnic and met some friends for a rockin' dance party at the NCMA outdoor amphitheater. We took some photos but rather than upload them now we thought we'd link to Stella Dot's blog since they posted some good pics and made an awesome video that really captured the moment.

We'll post our pictures tomorrow if they're good.



Thursday, July 16, 2009

Quote of the Day

Overheard at the Science Museum of Minnesota in St Paul:

~7 year old Boy pleading to his Mom to let him participate in a guided lab exhibit: "Mom, I really want to do science, please!"

Mom to Boy: "Not right now, son."

Boy shrugs his shoulders and walks off with his head down saying: "I'll never be good at science"

Unfortunately, the Mom did nothing to console her son and give him any reasons as to why he couldn't "do science". I really hope this kid can forget that experience and not give up on his quest to "do science"!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Swing Set

Forget the playgrounds! I have my own swing set now! Mima bought me this swing set for my 2nd birthday. Mom and Dad really wanted to buy a used swing set so we had to wait until we found one on craigslist. We found one about 3 weeks ago and before we left for our trip to NY we had some friends help us break it down and haul it over to our house.

I worked on the slide while the rest of the crew disassembled the main structure.

If the fort can hold up 3 grown men it can hold me! The swing set is 8 years old and needs a little washing and sanding, but for the main part, it's in great condition!

The day after we brought the swing set home we left for NY leaving us no time to put it together. I was told the whole time that as soon as we got home we'd put it up. On Sunday, during my afternoon nap, Dad and our neighbor Ed added 4 posts for additional support and then began putting it back together. It was like magic - asleep one moment and then poof - I had a swing set! I wouldn't let Dad and Ed finish the roof without personally trying out the swing!

Helping Dad rebuild the sandbox and picnic bench that sits under the fort. We will post more pictures of the finished backyard playground soon.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Little Miss Pink Piggy

My hair is finally long enough for pigtails! It's a little hard to see them in this picture but it's the only picture we took so it will have to do. Our phone camera is so much easier to carry around and since it takes descent pictures (if there's enough light) we're using it more and more. Hopefully, the Google Phone will create an app soon that allows us to post pictures right to the blog from our phone.

This picture was taken in front of the statue of St. Francis at the St. Francis Heart Hospital.

Monday, June 29, 2009

A Sunny Sunday Stroll

Sunday brought a break from our daily morning visits to the hospital to see Papa Dana. Mima took over for us and allowed us the opportunity for a trip to Jones Beach. It was such a beautiful morning - a little cloudy and windy with a high of 73! You couldn't ask for better weather. Mom and Dad went for a swim in the brisk ocean but I wouldn't even get my feet wet. I screamed and screamed every time Mom or Dad tried to get me in the water. I was content with the sand and my bucket!

Later that evening just as we had finished dinner we heard the ice cream truck coming down the street. We had ice cream in the freezer so there was no real need to buy from the truck except for the novelty of it. Mom and Dad let me have a couple of nibbles from their cones and as you can see I kind of like it!

Mom took this incredible picture from the hospital. We're hoping it's a sign of good things to come! If you look hard enough you'll see that this was a double rainbow. The second rainbow is stronger in other pics but I chose to upload this one as it appears that the rainbow is casting a ray of light onto the statue.

Eating lunch down by the boats in Port Washington. Notice my new shoes that Dad bought me yesterday - Pink Converse! I love them so much I had to wear them to sleep for my nap the day I got them.

While Mom has been over at the hospital Dad and I have been visiting Museum Row. Today we went to the Firefighters Museum and the Cradle of Aviation.

I found these sunglasses at the Museum and would not take them off the entire day.

Waiting for the next call to go and fight the fires.