Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

September 30, 2009

And Then There Were Two.


Back-to-school is in full swing around here. 

Now instead of one kid at the table there are two. Instead of one kid's reflection in the table during homework-time there are two. 

There's the boy, diligently working on his homework: 


And seriously, someone forgot to warn me about the jump in homework from first to second grade. It seems like there is a lot more to do compared to last year. 

And the there's the girl, taking it all in:


For her right now she is literally taking it all in. Everything goes right in her mouth. 

Another thing I am loving with her right now is her fascination and delight with all the photos we have up around the house. Her favorite is one that is hanging in her room of her and her cousin Gabrielle. She totally smiles and wants to stop there each time we walk by. It's been fun to see her reacting with such joy to the images. 


After Simon finishes his homework, or as we take a little break between subjects, he usually likes to check out whatever has been entertaining her for the last few minutes. On this day it was some felt food. I think she is asking politely for her hamburger back. 

And then there were two. 


Just one more reminder that Yesterday & Today – my online workshop with Big Picture Scrapbooking – begins tomorrow. I can't believe it is finally here! I am nervous and excited and am looking forward to getting started. Registration will remain open until October 7. 



Evalicious, one of my long-time blog sponsors, is celebrating this week with a complete re-design of her shop and blog. Check out her new blog here and her shop here. In celebration she is offering 10% off all orders through October 11. Just mention "shopevalicious" when you checkout. 


  • 1.
    christina said…

    I’m feeling this same shift…with my two. Bean is just dying for Sprout to be big enough to really roll around with–and with Sprout’s ENORMOUS size (he’s wearing 12-18month clothing) he’s almost there… scooting everywhere, and yes, like Anna, putting EVERYTHING in his mouth. And then there were two… I loved this set of photos too!

  • 2.
    Nicky from Canada said…

    Love the photos – thanks for sharing.
    So looking forward to your class tomorrow.

  • 3.
    Debbie Hodge said…

    oh, Ali, what AWESOME photos and everyday details.

  • 4.
    Kim Bolyard said…

    great photo…I would love to know how you keep the table looking so good….my girls would do their homework at our dinning room table and it never looked that good….lol

  • 5.
    Kristyn G said…

    Such fun photos Ali! I am looking forward to the miracle of having 2 little munchkins sitting around our table some day.
    And I am super excited about class starting tomorrow! Hubby is away on business for the next week, so this will be a much needed and appreciated distraction!
    “See” you in class tomorrow!

  • 6.
    Sarah Mullanix said…

    I love seeing the photos of your adorable two. We just added our third one year ago, and it’s amazing how such a little one can completely change the dynamics of every day life. Thanks for sharing yours.

  • 7.
    Cameron H said…

    I just have to exclaim over how clean your table is. I’m so impressed! :) If I tried to take that picture, there would be lots of gunky milk rings and Cheerios crumbs in the way. Lovely photos!!!

  • 8.
    Tanya said…

    I totally love the reflections picture! Great catch!

  • 9.
    SusanD said…

    I am so anxious and excited for class to begin tomorrow!

  • 10.
    Oma said…

    We have a granddaughter (2 years) who loves to look at photos too….framed on the wall, on the computer….and wants to identify all the people. She also loves dolls and stuffed animals. We have finally concluded that she likes things with faces, something that didn’t interest her older brother. These personality/gender/individual things are so interesting to observe.
    Great photos. Looks like they are becoming great friends. Simon must be Anna’s favorite toy.

  • 11.
    rhonda said…

    I completly agree about the homework jump from grade 1 to 2! Lot’s of work!

  • 12.
    arrica said…

    Silly question- What are the colors on the walls behind Simon? (the small wall and the larger one, from pictures one and two)

  • 13.
    Lisa Day said…

    Watch out! Third grade is even crazier. I can’t believe the amount of stuff this year. And not just the amount, but the level of the work. Big step up for sure. I’m so excited for your class to start tomorrow! I’m really looking forward to it!

  • 14.
    Katie said…

    So adorable! In my house growing up, there were two…and it was a good, good thing. :)

  • 15.
    Lisa said…

    I agree about the jump in homework from 1st to 2nd grade. My oldest daughter is in 2nd grade and she has a month-long project to observe the moon every day, along with a ton of other stuff. We just added our third daughter to our family, so it’s & then there were three here! I can’t wait for tomorrow!

  • 16.
    Fletch said…

    Great expressions and love the layout. Simple yet impactful. Anna’s polite “request” for the felt hamburger is priceless and so is Simon’s expression as well. Excited for tomorrow’s class.

  • 17.

    What beautiful pictures! Love the lighting and table reflections – beautiful!

  • 18.
    Jeni said…

    I am so excited about class tomorrow!
    Great pictures and words today.

  • 19.
    con-tain-it said…

    Hey Ali…sorry should have mentioned the second grade homework thang…I remember those days…I was a Teachers Aide for special ed in Italy way back when. Anyhow…there is a reason for the increase in homework…by the time they reach 2nd grade their motor skills have caught up with their intellectual skills and it’s a known fact that we learn “intellectually” in several ways…that is, visually (seeing), auditorial (hearing)and tactile (touch) and the biggest is repetition of all three ways. That’s where homework comes in…so in the classroom the kids are seeing and hearing it. Then with homework they are writing and repeating it and the children’s motor skills are usually mature enough for this process by 2nd grade so that they can sit still long enough to “repeat” their lessons. For kids who don’t like to “sit” hopefully the teachers are able to provide engaging “game” play like puzzels and journals or picture drawing so that the kids will enjoy the “repeat” process and will stay engaged. Hope this helps Ali…for my son, Timothy…who had trouble sitting still and staying focused when he was Simon’s age…I’d take him to the library and help him find books on his subjects that I read to him at night to make this process interesting. You know it’s odd now that I remember…my oldest son, Mitchell was in 2nd grade in Italy when we were living there and I was a Teachers Aide. Mitchell had no learning issues and Tim was actually born in Italy, there is 8 years between them because I wanted to make sure Mitchell was established before having any more kids. So by the time that Timothy was in 2nd grade we were stateside…so oddly enough…I had aquired the “skills” to help him with his learning issues…goes to show you that things happen for a reason. Sorry to go on so…just had to share. Hope this helps, fondly, Roberta

  • 20.
    Karen said…

    Just love the concentration on Simon’s face, and of course, I think Anna always has the most expressive face every time I see a picture of her. Also like how they’re reflected in the table. Cool shot–whether you intended to or not! One of my favorite photos from last year (taken during the Week in the Life) was the reflection in my rear mirror of a long line of cars behind us during after school pick-up. It was unintentional, but totally captured the moment in a way I would not even have thought of at the time.

  • 21.
    amber said…

    I’m curious as to where you bought your felt food?

  • 22.
    Angie in Japan said…

    Glad to see that you and your family are in the swing of things…back to school is always a fun time. Especially for a 2nd grader! They usually love their teachers and can’t wait to see their friends. Have a great autumn!

  • 23.
    Lydia said…

    Love your posts about Simon & Anna’s relationship. You capture the details so well. I’m nervous and excited for tomorrow too!
    My oldest is in Grade 1 now. Thanks for the warning about the jump in homework.

  • 24.
    Ali Edwards said…

    Hi Amber – a wonderful student in one of my classes a few years back made that for Simon. Maybe she reads here and will post if she has a shop.

  • 25.
    Shara said…

    I cannot wait for tomorrow, I am so excited. It feels like Christmas Eve and tomorrow is Christmas for me.

  • 26.

    Warning now: 3rd grade is alot more homework! LOT MORE! Ava has: Spelling words, Spelling sentences, Math facts to memorize(multiplication now), Science tests to study for, Math tests to study for (we give her problems from the book, she gets study guides from school to fill out and we print out the chapter test from the back of the book to have her complete), Reading (they say 20 minutes a night, but she does more like 30-60), at least 2-3 math pages per day. Seriously, she is doing at least 1-2 hours of homework every single night, if I count reading with it!! It gets crazier! I hear 4th grade is even worse, but Savannah hasn’t had that much yet and she’s in 4th, we shall see how that ends up!

  • 27.

    My son isn’t yet old enough to go to school, but I know that will happen to me soon. The photos are great. I’d like to check out that workshop too.

  • 28.

    My sons both struggle with their homework (1st & 3rd grade). They get so frustrated and upset about having to sit and do worksheets after school–when they already sat and did worksheets *during* school. Sometimes I make them do it. And sometimes if it’s just completely counterproductive–I write a wee note to the teacher explaining that my sons needed outdoor/unstructured time and that we were unable to complete it.
    Simon seems to be doing wonderfully, though. Perhaps this isn’t as frustrating for your family as it is for ours! :)
    p.s. the pictures look so warm and cozy. love it!

  • 29.
    tracey m. said…

    So much to love in this post:
    -the whole concept of “and then there were 2″
    -your awesomely “reflective” table
    -your sense of humor
    -knowing that someone else shares my shock over the jump in 2nd grade homework
    -the four cool thingies on the wall in the last shot(are they match holders?)

  • 30.
    Lauri said…

    Hi Ali – I feel just like Shara who posted earlier…I was sitting in a (corporate) meeting this morning daydreaming for some reason (no idea why…!!) and realized that tomorrow is Thursday, Oct 1st which means it’s the 1st DAY of ALI’s class!!! Whoo hoo!! I almost squealed right there in the conference room! Thanks for giving me so much to look forward to! Oh, and my order arrived today with your Technique Tuesday kit…can’t wait to go home and work on it!! Have a great day and keep hugging those babies!!

  • 31.
    Ali Edwards said…

    We do the same thing Elizabeth :) . It is actually very frustrating. I am finding that giving him free time right when he gets home for at least an hour – he wants to play video games – has worked so far before focusing on the homework. I try to have some sort of “good thing” for him to look forward to after he finishes (either before or after dinner). It is a challenge here too.

  • 32.
    Annette said…

    Sorry to ruin everyones delight with the homework try 4th grade with a special needs kid Ugh!!!!!!! We had an hour last night and that was before the nightly reading. My husband, just can’t believe it all. His first kid. Can’t wait for jr. high. Counting the hours until class tomorrow, hope I can keep up :)

  • 33.
    Mama Veg said…

    As a teacher, I was always mindful of how much homework I sent home. I’m not sure how productive it really is and some kids don’t even get help and are left to struggle alone. Not to mention trying to fix a misunderstanding that a child has reinforced by doing it wrong at home. It can be a battle for teachers. You would be surprised how many parents complain if you don’t send those worksheets home. I think the most productive evening activities are reading, spending time together, helping with chores, and getting some physical activity.

  • 34.
    Carrie P said…

    As a second grade aide, and past teacher and mom, glad the homework stage is over, one in college. Thanks for takeing the time to let him have some fun first. Our kids have 20 minutes of reading, a math fact paper and math concept paper and spelling words.
    Hang in there!
    Love the photos!

  • 35.
    sarah said…

    adorable photos!
    my eye also went to the wall behind the kids. are those vintage match holders lined up above that fabulous red stool? i LOVE the look of them (and the stool too!)!

  • 36.
    Allie said…

    A lover of photographs already? I wonder where she got THAT from?? :)

  • 37.
    Linda said…

    Awesome pictures Ali–the homework just keeps going and going–my oldest says it is even worse in Med School!! :)

  • 38.
    Rebecca Brigham said…

    Just wait until you get to third grade. Tonight it was the metric system! I never learned the metric system…. not really. Unfortunately, not much of a help to my daughter.

  • 39.
    Jeni said…

    Did I mention that I am really excited to start the course tomorrow. Wish it was today!!!

  • 40.
    Jeni said…

    I was curious about that too.

  • 41.
    prazdance said…

    thanks for the fresh take on…well….Everyday! LOL! Enjoy Life!

  • 42.

    just love that we aren’t the only folks who refer to our kids as “the boy” and “the girl”. After all that time we spent picking out perfectly nice names…. ;)

  • 43.

    I just this afternoon commented that second grade homework is kicking this mama’s rear… Maddie is working on a week-long project about clouds that involves lots of art supplies, and child #2 and #3 aren’t really that into leaving her alone to do it. On top of everything else there is to do :)

  • 44.
    KatherineB said…

    What a beautiful post Ali – love seeing Simon working so well on his work and Anna doing some serious study of her own – such a photo of bliss…..oh yeah …just wait until Simon has his first project to do – wompah that was a doozie in our place this year but as expected a child with ASD did it PERFECTLY!!!!!

  • 45.
    Sue said…

    Isn’t it great that your kids get along so well? Simon is growing up so quickly and obviously working so hard on his homework and your little sweetie is just too cute! Thanks for sharing your every day with us.

  • 46.
    amber said…

    thank you

  • 47.
    Lauren said…

    Catching up on my blog reading, and just read this post. Thought I’d share with you what my daughter’s 2nd grade teacher told me when I asked about the huge increase in homework. “Second Grade is all about preparing them for Third Grade, and in third grade they have to do more work, on their own and be more responsible for their own work” I found this to be quite true, and the jump from 3rd grade to 4th, which we made this years is just as big. Have fun and enjoy them, they are beautiful kids!

  • 48.
    Genevieve said…

    Thanks for the reminder about Evalicious. Just scooped up some of her dazzling button embellishments. :-)

  • 49.
    Kathy Besser said…

    Hi Ali!
    Have you seen the felt food by BeckyM over at Etsy? She makes the most amazing things and I always order baby shower or baby birthday gifts from her… so cool! Interestingly, her listing is just below yours on my Cool Links page. Here’s her Esty shop:
    All the best,

  • 50.
    Ali Edwards said…

    Kathy – that is an awesome link!!! I had not seen her before but will add her to my favorites.

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