Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Year's Eve

The Dyer-Payne trifecta hopes you had as wonderful a 2014 as we did.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A Moment of Silence

Chase, James and Estelle enjoy one quiet moment among a very loud afternoon of playing.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Splash Town

There's no end to The Critter's creative play in the bath. He sure loves tubby time.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Grandma Wins!

Our little dolphin enjoyed a long swim in Grandma and Grandpa's hotel pool. He made sure that Grandma was the winner go the "guess which number Chase was going to swim to game". We think this is the beginning of a long lasting camaraderie between Ace and Gma.

We are so grateful for the love of our family, near and far.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Christmas Wonder

We started the day with Nanna and Papa, Auntie Katie, Uncle Jean, James, and Estelle. We finished the day with Grandma and Grandpa. Filled with family and gifts, Ace cannot believe his good fortune this holiday season. Not even Emperor Zurg can curb his Woody-like excitement.

We love Christmas - and thank you all for making it so wonderful for our Little Critter.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Cookies for The Big Man

Doing it as only he can, Ace leaves his note and drawing for Santa, along with the cookie he picked out from our local bakery.

For Chase's sake, we sure hope St. Nick shows up...

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Kidding Around

We spent the day with Cousins Sara and Johnny. Ace tried a variety of ways to entertain them, including some innovative ways to use their bouncy seats. (Look closely behind Sara.)

Monday, December 22, 2014


Mommy took Estelle, Ace, and James to the playground for some romping this morning.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Holiday Reunion

Although they didn't arrive until late, Ace was ecstatic about playing with cousins James and Estelle, who came up from New York for the week. It was also Uncle Jean's birthday - yet another reason the kids kept the party going until nearly midnight.

Friday, December 19, 2014

John Ritter: Problem Child

The Critter essentially refused to go to bed tonight, choosing instead to look for the cats and ask for attention.

Frankly, we're doing the best that we can.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Santa's Little Helper

Chase helps fill gift baskets for all of his loving teachers at Breakwater.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Strange Vehicles

Chase had some fun putting together some weird vehicles on the refrigerator today.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Space Justice

Ace doles out some old-school discipline on an apparently ill-behaved Buzz Lightyear.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Stealing the Show

That's your star, stage right, dominating the holiday performance at Breakwater.

Note that he's wearing cat ears and has a cat nose - all part of the stage magic he brings to every performance.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Cuddly Christmas

Mommy & Son wrapped up under a blanket (after cheering the Patriots to victory, of course) to watch Elf on this chilly Sunday evening.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Just Like the Griswolds

Clark: We're kicking off our fun old fashion family Christmas by heading out into the country in the old front-wheel drive sleigh to embrace the frosty majesty of the winter landscape and select that most important of Christmas symbols.

Audrey: We're not coming all the way out here just to get one of those stupid ties with Santa Clauses on it are we?

Clark: No, I have one of those at home.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Good-Night Kitten Kisses

Our friendly, neighborhood bobcat has taken to joining us in bed each night for story time. While he's often rather annoying -- walking all over us and scratching his face against the edge of the book -- he usually settles down eventually.

When he does, Ace likes to get a few kisses on his fingers.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Mr. Fix-It

Ray, the beloved maintenance worker at Breakwater, patiently shows the kids the parts of the inside of an EXIT sign. Teachers come in many forms.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Clean Eating

The Critter's had a bit of an upset stomach for the last two days and didn't have any dinner tonight. We did manage to get him to eat part of a corn muffin after his bath, providing him with the delightful chance to dine in the bathroom.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Future Coder

Today, Chase too to the laptop to play a math game. After a quick tutorial from Mommy he was able to figure out simple addition to solve some puzzles.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Old Friends

Sean, an old friend from Denver, is in Maine visiting his grandparents. We were lucky to have him, along with his Mommy and little brother Sam, here this afternoon to play. It was like old times on Uinta Street.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Jedi in Training

Ace's friend Lila May threw a blockbuster birthday party today, with a Star Wars theme. For three hours, this little Skywalker never put down his light saber. Many Bad Guys were vanquished. As were cupcakes.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Seashore Trolley

Mommy and Chase had a holiday date today with a trip on a Christmas trolley through the woods and a dinner out.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Imitation is Flattery

After watching a very funny video of cousin Johnny eating sweet potato and chicken, and not liking it at all, Chase makes his best Johnny face.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Snowy Santa

Our favorite Snowy Santa found his beard in a block of ice. He promptly threw it on the ground and broke it into a"million, zillion, bazillion, million" pieces.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Ice Castles

Chase and his buddy, Haviland, enjoy playing in the ice tunnels after school.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Sunday, November 30, 2014


Nanna and Papa stayed over last night, and we had a busy morning with them, as they helped us continue to unpack and organize. One treasure we uncovered was Pachy - our favorite plush elephant. After the grandparents departed, Ace was very clingy with his long-lost companion.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

From One a Grandma to Another

We say goodbye to the Payne side of the family and returned to Maine, where the Dyer side awaited us. The Critter enjoyed playing Legos with Nanna, and was happy to have her read him a book back in his own bed.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Turkey Day Two

Grandma and Grandpa joined us at Auntie Amanda and Uncle Johnny's house today. It was great to visit, and Cousin Sara got a particular kick out of pulling Ace's wet hair after his bath.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Giving Thanks

We are very thankful that Ace has such a wonderful cousin in Johnny (not to mention Sara, James, and Estelle) on this beautiful Thanksgiving Day.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014


Chase had the day off from school and experienced the Maine Children's Museum with Mommy. Then, it was a short walk through the snow to meet Daddy for lunch near his office.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Monday, November 24, 2014

Lovin' the Coast

Mommy and Ace explored the beach at Fort Williams Park this afternoon and discovered this amazing, free-standing heart arch. A sign nearby asked visitors not to disturb it - it was created by a roaming artist. We love it!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Casco Reunions

Chase returned to one of Mommy and Daddy's old stomping grounds today, the Casco Public Library. The longtime librarian is retiring, and we journeyed up to wish her farewell.

While Ace didn't remember his last trip to the library (when he was a few months old), he enjoyed playing there today, including finding a hidden pig in this Christmas display.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Cat's in the Cradle

The Critter crawled into bed with us this morning, where another critter was already comfortably settled in.

"Take a picture for Chase-a-Day with me and Birdie," he said. We couldn't refuse.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Sledding Without Snow

Chase and the neighborhood kids slide down the hill adjoining our yard without the slippery snow. It's only a matter of time before the sleds really take off.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Our House

Chase insisted our house must have a roof. Inside there were various Lego people.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Blue Hand of Chase

The bad guys might have the white hand of Saruman, but the good guys have the blue hand of Ace.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Relaxing on a Rainy Afternoon

Chase enjoyed some quiet time before dinner. Mommy even let him watch one of her favorite cartoons, Alvin and the Chipmunks.

Sunday, November 16, 2014


Today marks the day when ice formed on our pond and didn't melt during the day. Chase enjoyed breaking pieces of ice with a stick. This piece looked particularly like South America.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Kid Construction Worker

Ace dubbed himself "Kid Construction Worker," as he helped Daddy build a new set of steps for the basement. He really was a help!

Friday, November 14, 2014

The Boys

Chase loves playing with the neighborhood kids after school.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Rock Lobster

Chase discovered a rocking chair fashioned out of lobster traps while at the Maine Mall today.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Fast Friends

Still battling strep, Ace had to stay home from school today. Without his Breakwater buddies, he made do with companionship from Buzz Lightyear.