So this morning I was doing my usual thing, trying to decide which cup to drink out of. First I wanted the pink one, then the purple one, then pink, purple, NO PINK! It’s so hard to decide!

Then the phone rings and Mom starts chatting away which I found very rude because I just wanted to talk about my milk cup. So I started to do whatever I could to get her attention. I tried climbing her leg, I tried hollering, I tried screaming, I tried crying.

Finally Mom bends down and looks me straight in the eye and says in her most serious voice “Tess, I’m on the phone trying to make arrangements to go see Santa Claus, so please be a good girl and be quiet until I am off the phone.”

Wha-wha-whaaat???? We’re going to see SANTA CLAUS!

When she gets off the phone she explains that Santa picked us to ride on the real Polar Express to see Santa and his workshop!

Why didn’t she just say that in the first place? I mean, I couldn’t care less what cup I use, I don’t have time for those details, I need to start thinking about my Christmas List so I can present it to SANTA!

Polar Express 2008

So yeah, we’re going to see Santa. Mom says that many children want to go see Santa but each year only some can go – there’s not enough room on the train for everyone! I’m SO EXCITED! Mom says its a long way off, but the better to prepare my Christmas list.

What’s that? Oh, Story is telling me to mention Halloween. Yeah, next week is Halloween. We’re still working on my costume, but don’t worry, I can still work on my LIST, I’m great at multi-tasking.


Have you seen April? ‘Cuz I tew-tally missed it when it was here, and now it’s GONE!

Well as usual we’ve been busy here at the Strawberry patch, and April was no exception.

More socializing…

Some kite flying…

visiting the cousins…

looking cute (this is a LOT more time consuming that it appears)

What? You expected a photo to back this one up? Hello?, there’s plenty of evidence of my cuteness elsewhere on the blog…oh, ok, if you insist:

and some generic horsing around with Daddy

Alrighty, well it seems I only had time to recap April, I’ll come back soon and fill you all in on May.

Gotta run!


March this year is stacking up to be quite a month. So many awesome things happened this month, I don’t know where to begin!

Story and I took our first bath together!!! Twice the fun!

I started my art class, and have already made a ton of fine art projects:

My artistic skills came in handy when I was tapped by Mom to manage the Easter Egg decorating project.

This past Sunday was Maine Maple Easter Sunday, which is the day the Easter Bunny makes all the maple syrup, and puts baskets of candy in your house while you’re out freezing your butt off eating pancakes outside! It really is a spectacular holiday, especially the ice cream and maple syrup.

Here I am with my friend Nina enjoying ice cream after our pancake breakfast:

After we got home from pancakes, I took a nice warm nap, and woke up to find bunny tracks all over the house! This made it super easy for me to hunt all the eggs.

Oh yeah, and Story ate avocado:

I think Story did some other stuff, but alas, I’m out of time!


Well we’ve been busy here at the Strawberry Patch. In the last few weeks we had Thanksgiving, Dad’s birthday, AND Dad got sworn at by the State of Massachusetts. I’m not sure why that last one is such a big deal, Mom does it all the time. But this time they made a big deal over it with a ceremony to swear at a bunch of men and women in suits.

Happy Birthday Dad!

Thanksgiving was a blast. We spent it with Grandpa Marino and the cousins. Dad tried to explain the whole cranberry–turkey thing to me, but I stuck to the basics this year.

The best part about Thanksgiving is the duck pins bowling!!! Apparently this is a long standing tradition in my Mom’s family. Dad had to help me out a bit, but apparently I have bowling in the blood.

Did I mention we also had our first snow here in Maine? I was a little confused when I first woke up, I thought it was Christmas!! But Dad explained that it snows on other days too. So confusing. Anyway, snow is very cool. No, seriously, its downright COLD. You need to be prepared before going out in it:

It took me and Dad most of the morning to get all these layers on:

Trust me, it was worth it.

Where was Story during all this fun in the snow? She was inside in her swing. Yeah, babies can’t go out in the snow. Maybe next year.

Well, gotta run I have to catch up on my sleep. I’ll come back later and tell you all about my weekend in Connecticut.


I don’t know if my regular readers are aware of this, but I’ve been getting some pretty crazy comment action these days. I mean seriously people, I’m a toddler, watch your language!!!!!

So I just want to make a couple things clear to my new readers (I’m sure all my regulars understand the essense of the blog of Tess, so you guys can just skip ahead…) But for all you newbies… listen up! I need to make a few things very clear. I’ll put it in numerical list format for easier comprehension, I know how you newbies like to skim:

1) I loved the Bumbo;

2) I never really intended to file suit against the makers of Bumbo (please people, are any of you crazy noters actually READING my blog??? see www.m-w.com for some help on this one!);

3) I STILL love the BUMBO!!!!! Check it out:

So with that, I would like to close the chapter on the Bumbo controversy. That’s it, case closed!

In other news, last weekend we went to the spectacular Mom to Mom Halloween party. Can you guess what we are?:

It helps if you can see a closeup of Story:

Any guesses?

Well we’re moving right along on our Fall To-Do List. This weekend we went to the Raven Hill Orchard for some apple picking. The weather was sunny and crisp — a perfect day for roaming in a beautiful apple orchard!

I highly recommend the Raven Hill Orchard. It’s certified organic, and no long lines!!! They don’t have the donut machine hooked up yet though. That’s ok, we had our fill of donuts last weekend. And I do have to say I’ve never tasted a better McIntosh in my entire life! I know, I didn’t have any molars last fall, but I’ve sampled plenty of apples THIS season.

The best part about Raven Hill was all the eye-level apples. You know how I love to be self-sufficient.

But occasionally I spotted a real winner that was up too high, and that’s where Dad came in handy.

So we’ve still got a busy agenda for the rest of the season. I still don’t know what I’m going to be for Halloween. Any suggestions?

As I mentioned, Story keeps us busy around here. It’s a full time job just trying to coax a smile out of her. Apparently Story did not get my sense of humor, I’m sure I was never like that! I don’t know, maybe she’s upset about living in my shadow. It certainly looks that way:

Anyway, we’re still having fun. A couple weeks ago we had a visit from Aunt Jackie (I think that’s her name, I’m having a tough time keeping track of all the dark haired ladies that come around here).

We’ve also got a full agenda for Fall in Maine, here’s our to-do list:

1. Apple Picking
2. Cider Donut Eating
3. Pumpkin Procurement
4. Corn Maze
5. Leaf Peeping
6. Cider Donut Eating
7. Costume Development
8. Halloween Partying/Trick-or-Treating

I have to admit we’re not doing so well on our list, but the season is still young. Last weekend we set out to do #1 and #2 at Thompson’s Orchard. Unfortunately, we got waylaid in the donut line and by the time we had our tummies full of fresh fried dough, it was nap time and the apples went unpicked. Well, I guess we did capture ONE apple:

Those were some mighty fine donuts, so I’m glad Mom and Dad knew to bump the apples off for another week.

This weekend I think we’ll tackle the corn. Stay tuned for details.


Things have really slowed down for the Tessers (that’s me) these days. Now that Story wants to tag along everywhere I go, it’s much harder to jet around the way I used to.

But we do still get out on occassion. The other weekend we went to Sebago Lake to check it out. It wasn’t as exciting as the ocean, but they did have a wicked huge (hey, I’m almost a native Mainer!) sand castle on the beach. We’re talking Guinness Book action, check it out:

Don’t get me wrong, I love having Story around. And I don’t mind the extra responsibility of being “the Big Sister” — you know, making sure no one drools on her at the playground, or drops a marracca on her at Music Together. In fact, I kind of like it.

I have been asked if Story will start her own blog, or if I’ll let her have a voice here…. well… I love the little shrimp but lets not get carried away. Speaking of carried away, it’s my bedtime, so I gotta run!


I’ve been so busy enjoying summer in Maine, I’ve barely had time to write!!!

Last week was our family reunion at The Farm at French’s Point. And then over the weekend was my Grandpa’s wedding!

I’m still busy unpacking, but I’ll be back soon to give a full report.


In the great green field…

Today Mom, Dad and I went to the Big Red Barn!!! I’m not joking. Mom and Dad didn’t figure it out, but I’m positive it’s the exact farm FROM THE BOOK!!!

How do I know this, you ask???

Well, first off, check out the similarity:

The Smiling Hill Farm, as they call it, where we went today:

And the famous Big Red Barn:

And other evidence I collected…

There was a pink pig, who was learning to squeal:

A little cow that “mooooooed”:

oh, and they don’t mention this in the book, but that little cow likes to kiss too….

these Mainers sure are friendly…

Anyway, you get the picture. It’s basically the place from the book, I’m certain of it.

Who knows what else they’re hiding up here in Maine? Next week what will it be? Maybe we’ll visit Nutbrown Hare in the Great Green Room or something. I can’t wait!!

Anyway, that place is great. After petting the animals, we played on some of the farm equipment. But kids, don’t try this at home, this requires a LICENSE:

After driving the tractor, we had worked up quite an appetite. So we sampled some fresh ice cream, fed the ducks, then headed home. But not without a batch of fresh milk and cheese to go! YUM!!!

Well, gotta run to bed now.


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