Thursday, September 23, 2010

My Life IS a Country Time Lemonade Commercial

Davis started tennis lessons last week.  While I do not expect him to evolve into the next Roger Federer, he has wanted to play since Katie and I started, and he seems to have a good time.  He enjoys playing any sport these days, and I can't help too much with football.  I throw like a girl, apparently.  Also, I don't like things being thrown at my head.  At least with a tennis racquet I can defend myself!

I thought that he had a lesson today.  We raced to the courts straight from his school and waited in the shade, lounging on the chairs and drinking lemonade.  Since it wasn't time for Katie to be home yet, we enjoyed a little time with just the two of us.  We talked about school, about getting a flu mist vaccine, about Disney World, about Cousin Whit, and about everything else that came to mind.  Nobody else was there and we quickly realized there would be no lesson today, but neither one of us wanted to leave.  I was really enjoying some time with my son and I was glad to be alone with him.  So there we sat, enjoying the late-summer afternoon together with our discussion and our lemonade.  Here was part of that conversation:

Me:  What was your favorite part of school today?

Davis:  No, Mommy.  Ask me what my favorite part of the whole day is.

Me:  OK.  What was your favorite part of the whole day?

Davis:  This right here.

Me, too, Buddy.  Me, too.

Monday, September 13, 2010

An Open Letter to A.K. Vogel

For people outside of my family and Knoxville, A.K. Vogel is a premier photographer and friend of mine. She has been kind enough to take our family portraits for the last two years. To see her work and find out more about her, visit her website at

Dear A.K.,

It was great to see you two weeks ago for our photo shoot. I tried to warn you about Davis, and I know that you didn’t believe me. After all, he was a live wire last year, and you somehow managed to produce pictures that brought my family to tears with their loveliness. Those pictures were wonderful, and I hardly expected you to pull a rabbit out of your hat two years in a row.

I guess you began to believe me when Davis started spitting at you and your very very very nice camera. I really appreciated how athletic you were as you chased him down the steep hill toward the river. You tried every trick you knew to get him to cooperate. I tried to kill him until Scott, ever the calm one, stopped me. As I told you in the many subsequent emails, I cried when we left. Davis received the fullest-extent-of-the-law punishment for his behavior. I whined to my sister and mom about how bad he was. I felt sorry for myself that I wouldn’t be able to put my new family portrait on the wall. (And I had the frame ready!) Everyone close to me had to hear the story of the ruined portrait session ad nauseum.

Then you went and made an absolute liar and fool out of me.

You produced this:

And this:

And this:

And this (Katie was an angel for almost all of the evening, but still, this is magical.)

My family and friends defended Davis, saying that obviously he couldn’t have been THAT bad, because the pictures they saw were all great. They all accused me of *gasp* over-reacting and being a tad histrionic. (Me? Never!) Davis went down as the most abused and maligned child of all time with his cruel mother who talked about him so badly. But you and I KNOW what really happened, A.K. And just so the world will appreciate just what an amazing job you did, here are the photos titled “what really went down that day”!

You can't see me!

Like I said, Davis is the only person who has received this look from me and lived to tell about it.

Will. Not. Smile.

And the one that just sums it all up:

No preschoolers were harmed in the making of this photo.

A.K., you are truly a miracle worker. Or a graduate of the Hogwarts School of Photography. We gave you the worst of lemons and you made lemonade. For the beautiful pictures that make us look almost normal AND the ones that represent more of our true selves, thank you from the bottom of my evil little heart!

Love, Vaiden


Hello Acts of Davis Readers (Mom!):

It has been a while. I did not intend to take a three and a half week hiatus, but late summer/fall has hit me like a ton of bricks. I am not pretending like I am the only mom with this problem – everyone I know is struggling to keep up with it all! I would stare longingly at my laptop, but could not find the time to put out a blog and to be honest, my brain has been so twisted up like a pretzel that nothing I wrote would have made any sense anyway! The last three and a half weeks have welcomed the return of school for Katie, school for Davis, Sunday School, Girl Scouts, tennis for me, tennis for the kids, having the outside of the house painted, hosting an enormous baby shower, church meetings, weekly camera classes, football and tailgating season, and out-of-town company for two weekends. I have been a busy girl.

Despite all of those activities, everything has gone well. The painters didn’t fall off the roof. Davis and Katie have made fairly smooth transitions into new school years. The Vols are 1-1. I am loving my new camera and learning how to use it. The weather is cooling off, and we were able to eat dinner outside for the first time in months. Life is good for the Taylors, and thank you to all of you who are interested in reading about our adventures and misadventures. More blogs soon, I promise!