Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Another month, another song! January's performance is pretty uneventful (especially considering the debacle that was December's performance), though I was struck by how much more clearly Hallie speaks now compared to how she spoke back in September and October. She's just about all grown up!

It's December
It's November
It's October
It's September

Thursday, January 26, 2012


Will worked on this trick for weeks. WEEKS. There were tears of injury (his). Yells of frustration (his). Declarations of failure (his). Followed by... Words of encouragement (from me). Tactical discussions (between him and me). And then one day, he finally did it. This accomplishment may look small, but to me it's Oh So Big.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Basketball is Underway

Basketball season is underway! The season officially began on January 9th with two weeks of practices. Unlike soccer season, which from the get-go includes one practice and one game each week, basketball starts off with two full weeks of practices before the games start. The reason for this is that, even at four, five, and six-years-old, the kids are expected to actually play the game the way it was intended to be played. The biggest challenge for the kids is dribbling, or at least their biggest challenge as of yet is dribbling - they really haven't even touched defense, which I imagine will be much tougher.

Here's Will as we were heading out the door to his first practice...

...and here are a few action shots from that first night.

We can't wait for Will's team (the Bulls) to actually play a game!

Thursday, January 19, 2012


This video of Hallie needs no real introduction. I will only say that I hope the Biebs likes it.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Ferris Ladies

(Minus Chandi, sniff sniff.)

August 2009

December 2011

Thursday, January 12, 2012


Will has always been pretty tolerant of spicy foods. He started eating and enjoying buffalo wings as soon as he was old enough to eat meat, and he actually enjoys spicy salsas and dips. But despite the fact that Will's spicy-tolerance age is probably three or four times his chronological age, Tom is always trying to get Will to sample even spicier foods like jalapeƱo peppers and hot sauces. And because Will wants to please his daddy, he often agrees.

Recently, Will tried something hot (perhaps Tom's homemade salsa or a drop of hot sauce on a chip), didn't like it, and exclaimed loudly, "Oh! That's too spicy!"

Hallie heard Will use the word "spicy", determined that it meant "bad", and within hours started using it as a replacement.

"Mama, I not eat my Cheerios. Dey (they) are too spicy."

"Daddy, I not take a snoozy-snooze. Bedtime is spicy."

"WILL! DON'T CHASE ME! Dat (that) is spicy!"

Hallie is in the throws of the terrible two-and-three-quarters, and can be pretty difficult to be around these days. As I've mentioned before, she must do everything all by herself, has very specific ideas about how everything she can't do by herself should be done, and believes all of our lives should revolve around hers. One day a couple of weeks ago, when Hallie was driving us all crazy, Tom looked at her and said, jokingly, "Hallie, you're being a little bit spicy". She freaked out ("I'M NOT SPICY!"), but the rest of us laughed and the descriptor took. We now regularly use "spicy" in reference to Hallie's behavior, and she's come to use it herself as well. It actually works really well, as it's a way for us to let her know we don't like the way she's behaving without telling her she's behaving badly or being a bad girl.

I fear we may have ruined hot foods for her though...

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Best Nap Ever

This has always been Tom's favorite place and way to nap.  Above: Tom and a 
two-and-a-half-year-old Hallie.  Below: Tom and a six-week-old Will.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Christmas Recap

We spent Christmas, as well as a few days beforehand and a few days afterwards, in Lincoln, NE with Grandpa Mike and Grandma Susie, AJ, and Unkie Grant. We missed Uncle Adam and Aunt Chandi, who were traveling to PEI to spend the holidays with Chandi's family, but hope to see them sometime this summer. Christmas in July, anyone?

We were also lucky enough to see Tom's grandparents, who visited the Ferris house while we were in Lincoln, and we drove north to South Sioux City, NE the day after Christmas to share lunch with Tom's grandma, two aunts, two uncles, and five cousins. Will particularly enjoyed Tom's cousins George (10th grade) and John (7th grade) who both played "boy games" like wrestling and football with him. As I watched Will run George and John ragged, I remembered with a smile just 10 or so years ago (when George and John were about Will and Hallie's ages) watching George and John run Tom ragged. What goes around comes around, in a round about way. :)

I took embarrassingly few pictures, considering everything we did and everyone we saw during our trip. I guess we were just too busy having fun...

Wrapped up like a present.

Discussing her wrappings.

AJ and the kids after Christmas Eve mass.

Setting out milk (Santa's not allergic to regular milk, in case you were wondering) 
and cookies for Santa and carrots for the reindeer.

Opening one present on Christmas Eve.

Modeling her Christmas Eve gift from Grandma and Grandpa.  

Santa's gift to Hallie (she already had the doll, whose name is 
Cassie Grandpa - yes, that's first name = Cassie,
middle name = Grandpa): a tea set and a tea table and chairs.

Santa's gift to Will: a Storm Troopers Bullet Gun (Santa's had a really hard 
time deciding whether or not to follow through on Will's request for a gun...) 
and the book One.  Read it.  You won't be disappointed.

Setting up her first tea party.

Enjoying tea and cupcakes with Cassie Grandpa.  I absolutely cannot believe 
Hallie fits in the designed-for-American-Girl-dolls chairs.

Moments after this picture was taken we established the "DO NOT POINT THE GUN 

AJ gave Hallie her first tiara...

...and her first pair of fake/fashion glasses.  The glasses were perhaps the biggest hit of the day - she wore them all day on Christmas and for many days after that.

This picture is included to illustrate two things.  First, Tom is wearing an orange mustache labeled with the mood "sassy".  Fitting, I suppose, as he can be a bit sassy.  Second, look outside.  It's still dark out, and at this point we'd already been opening presents for at least 30 minutes.  I do not like getting up before the sun, even on Christmas, but it was worth it to see the excitement on Tom's face when he opened that sassy mustache.  And the excitement on the kids' faces when they realized Santa'd come.

AJ and her melancholy mustache.  She wasn't melancholy - she 
just thought the blue mustache went best with her outfit.

Helping Hallie open her gift from him - is was a pink hair bow 
that he spent 25 minutes carefully selecting.

Will with his gift - an Angry Bird - from Hallie.  Though Hallie had A LOT of helping 
picking out this present, Will thought she'd done it all on her own and showered 
her with love and thanks for giving him something so awesome.

Reapplying Hello Kitty chapstick for the 187th time.

Unkie Grant - no mood mustache here, just the real deal.

Grandpa Mike and Tom opening the birdhouses the kids painted for them.  

Merry, merry Christmas!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Tis the Season...

...for colds and infections and broken bones, oh my!

In the last two weeks we've all had colds of varying severity, Will developed pink eye in one eye and then the other, and Hallie broke her collarbone.

The colds are to be expected. Pink eye is a right-of-passage for preschoolers (I had it when I was three or four, and vividly remember lying across my mom's lap and crying while she tried to ease drops of medicine into my infected eye). But a broken collarbone? In that teeny, tiny little pip-squeak of a thing? Now THAT I wasn't expecting.

On the Sunday night before Christmas Hallie slipped and fell - sideways - off one of our kitchen stools. It happened in slow-motion, really - I watched her tip to the side and slip, and then I saw both of her legs fly into the air and drop below the counter. (If she hadn't broken her collarbone during the fall it would have been quite the comedic scene.) By the time I'd run around to her side of the counter, she was lying on her back on the floor, whimpering. Not crying, just whimpering.

She guarded her shoulder for the rest of the evening, but I wasn't terribly worried.

The next morning, Will woke up with pink eye and I called the doc to schedule an appointment for later that day. I decided that since I was already heading to the doctor's office, I might as well have Hallie looked at too. The nurse practitioner (our doc wasn't available that morning) felt Hallie's shoulder, tested her strength, and asked her to move her arms in a variety of ways. Apparently Hallie did well, because the nurse practitioner deemed her in good shape. Though I'm sure she didn't mean to, the NP made me feel a little paranoid for bringing Hallie in, which rubbed me the wrong way because I'm as far from a paranoid mom as they come - following in my mom's footsteps, I'm a "take two Ibuprofen and put ice on it" kind of gal.

We went about our merry way, going to school on Tuesday, and driving to Nebraska on Tuesday and Wednesday. But on Thursday afternoon, when Hallie was still complaining of pain and guarding her shoulder and after Doctor Grandpa and Physical Therapist Neighbor/Friend/Jake each examined her, we headed to a doctor friend of the family for an x-ray. Sure enough, not only was Hallie's collarbone broken, it was displaced in a way that looked terribly painful.

The funniest thing about all this is that Hallie hardly complained AT ALL. She was happy and smily and funny EXCEPT when someone picked her up and put upward pressure underneath her arms. Tom felt a bit sheepish about the Vicodin regimen, week off work, and 12+ week recovery he needed after he broke his collarbone last April...

Hallie was also happy and smily and funny at the doctor's office - she charmed the pants off everyone who worked there, scoring herself a number of new friends and about 25 stickers that she stuck all over her bare chest while wandering the halls of the office with her pants falling off her teeny butt.

There weren't slings and/or apparatuses small enough to splint Hallie's collarbone, but that didn't really matter because she was doing a great job of splinting and guarding her arm on her own, and quite frankly, she wasn't all that interested in wearing either anyway. That is until Grandma Susie fashioned her a sling out of pink toole. This was the only sling my little princess would wear.