Monday, June 29, 2009

iPhone Decision

We bought the "new" iPhone 3G back in August 2008 as we needed a new phone and we were traveling to China plus thought the features would make it easier to use the web when we were away from our laptop. We loved it over in China and still would buy it again.
The new 3GS is out and I was checking out the improved differences.

Have you bought the new 3GS?
I am sure it may have a few bugs to work our but read this on overheating (not a good thing!). It sounds like this has been a problem from the initial model, but we have not experienced any problems.
Since I am using my company issued cell phone, I do not carry the iPhone (my DH does, lucky him!) so am considering taking the plunge into iPhone territory.
What do you like about it?

Friday, June 26, 2009

We Would Never Spoil Our Child...

Sure we would... (do)

Having spent our fair share of time on the road with AA, we got to thinking. Why not incorporate a bit of the in-room convenience we enjoy in the hotel room for Alyzabeth's use at home...?

I had this mini-fridge (the pic above is a stock photo) in my office and since transitioning into my SAHP role it had just been gathering dust in a back room.
AA can now get her own water or milk and she's very good at putting back what she doesn't finish. It's kind of cute watching her open her fridge, grab a quick drink and then move on to some heavy duty play time.
At the end of the day, I just pitch what is left and start with new cups in the morning.

Sure it's a novelty but hey, she loves it. And if baby girl is happy...daddy and mama are happy :)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

You Know You're An Older Parent

My friend Don got me to thinking about this with his latest post.

You Know You're An Older Parent When:

  • There’s a schedule conflict between Grandparent’s Day and Parent’s Day at school.
  • Your bedtime comes before theirs.
  • Playing on the floor involves you sitting on the couch.
  • All your lullaby tunes include a subtle mix of The Beatles.
  • You keep increasing your term life insurance.
  • The guardians named in your Will ask, “How are you doing?” And mean it.
  • You worry about losing your drivers license at the same time your child is worried about getting theirs.
  • When dining out you qualify for Kids Eat Free and the Senior Discount!
  • Strangers smile and ask how many grandchildren you have.
  • Your 3 year old is an Aunt.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day Part II

We enjoyed a meal and visit with Don & Be tonight. Check out their post, so much more descriptive than we could have ever written (about the place we ate dinner, the music and the bar patrons!!).
So good to see how well their little JMei is doing! She's a bundle of energy! And so much taller than AA!

Here's the Happy Fathers'; also known as the "HomeDaddy's" (Don's words).

And here is all six of us:

Happy Father's Day 2009!

To all the first time Dad's: Congratulations, May you a have a wonderful day hugging and playing with your new child!
We wish and hope for those Dad's still in The Wait to continue holding them in your heart and soon in your arms!

To my Dearest Husband who has been a Daddy for 36 years, Happy Father's Day!!
You are wonderful, patient and loving! You have our new daughter for her first Father's Day together and you do a wonderful job as the SAHP!
AA is growing, blossoming, learning and loving her new family under Daddy's great care.

Happy Father's Day!

Pictures from this morning....

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Feeling Better...

I had a sudden turn of events on Friday and Saturday so no new, exciting posts right now.

I was admitted to the hospital for a "treatment", I am fine; can you spell "a-n-e-m-i-a?
I may blog about it at a later date as it was my first time ever spending a night in a hospital and I learned alot about the topic that I could share, in case you are in the dark as much as I was about this health concern.

I will share a few pictures I took today after AA and I had our naps! I had her try on a new outfit given to us... so cute! She is beginning to fit into all her 24 month clothes and some 2T's! She is growing! Yes!!!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Development Assets

I found this great monthly feature column on the 5 Minutes for Mom web site about empowering youth. A few words about summer activities caught my eyes.
I clicked on the link for the 40 Developmental Assets and was surprised to see a link for all children's age groups.
So next, I am reading the list for 3 - 5 year olds, Early Childhood.

The assets are explained in categories: support, empowerment, boundaries, constructive use of time, commitment to learning, positive values, positive identity and social competencies. What I really liked is the "Take Action" area, roll your mouse over it and there are ideas on how to implement each asset. I downloaded the file and will review each one for new ideas for AA to do with us. Let me know what you think (and if you decide on an activity, please share!).

Here's a few words from the "Power of Assets": Studies of more than 2.2 million young people in the United States consistently show that the more assets young people have, the less likely they are to engage in a wide range of high-risk behaviors and the more likely they are to thrive. Assets have power for all young people, regardless of their gender, economic status, family, or race/ethnicity. Furthermore, levels of assets are better predictors of high-risk involvement and thriving than poverty or being from a single-parent family.

So many resources contained on the web site, if you have teenagers, this "Sparks!" site looked like a great resources too.

Always check this web site for the list of weekly giveaways. It's always fun to visit new blogs and try for a chance to win a cool prize!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Pillows for Children

We have previously posted about collecting new pillows for the FUMCH. They need just about every commodity possible for the residential program. Everything it takes to feed, clothe and raise a child.

I asked a few of the local UM churches about donating pillows and we received a great response! We will be heading to the Children's Home soon and can hardly wait to surprise them with their new pillows!!

We still have more to pick up and they already cover the top of our pool table. Hope they fit in our car!!

Thank you to the local families at Fleming Island, Southside, Asbury and Middleburg UMC who donated!
Update: Final count of 65 to be delivered! Thank you again!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

ISR - Infant Swimming Resource

This is an abbreviated video of one of AA's ISR classes.

The focus for Alyzabeth is to get into her survival float position quickly, due in large part to the risk of her falling off our dock. We need AA floating ASAP; we would never be able to see her under the tannin stained waters of the St. Johns River.
In lessons this week, AA will be fully clothed, including jacket and shoes.

ps: on a totally unrelated subject. Exactly 9 months ago today, Alyzabeth was first placed in her mom's arms! Happy 9 month anniversary you two!! Love you...

Sunday, June 14, 2009

My Little Helper! Sunday Update

AA was very helpful while I assembled the new red picnic table sent to her by her Nana; we were assembling by 6:00 a.m. when she awoke a little early today - we are in our bed clothes!

Reading directions, I told her how important that was!

Making sure I get the bolts in the right holes.....

AA counted and handed me the hardware; think she will remember the difference from a phillips screwdriver and the pliers?

Dolling out the required bolts, washers and nut caps as needed. I told her the number and she produced them!

Eating breakfast on her new table.... no stinking high chair for AA anymore!!

The finished product! AA can easily seat herself, moving on and off the seats with ease.

Part of the table's box was enlisted for play, as a house frame..... sitting on her table top (right side).

At snack time... she was pretty much overloaded on picture taking... this is her "please no more pictures" look or "so what" look as she tries to escape!

Weekend Photos

I am envious of the Mommy's who set up their blogs to have the wider pictures. I just cannot get enough photos of AA! I just love her to death!! She's a happy toddler! It will be nine months on June 16 from Forever Family Day and we are so happy! Every time I take pictures of her (wishing I could take better quality photos), I just tear up with joy over the blessing we have been given!!

She talks but not very understandable to most people......lots of babbling and mimicking....we understand her more and more.
Her brother Justin was here twice this week repairing various electrical systems that needed attention; AA loves seeing him, even though she is usually shy for the first few minutes then accepts lots of hugging from him!
She is in her last week of ISR swim classes..... she's like a cork after jumping in the pool water and immediately positions herself underwater to come up and float on her back. She is doing so well!! She loves floating on her back (no frantic panicking, she loves to float!!). Survival is second nature to her!
She loves her little Radio Flyer (from Nana & L.L. Bean) bike (no pedals)... she moves that all over the house..... we need to buy a tricycle with real pedals now..... (looking for a used "Morgan"; wonder why??!)

So here's the photos from yesterday, Saturday. I asked her to pose so most of these are not candid.... She still wants to be coy and avoid the camera.....

She was looking at pictures of herself with the pretend binoculars......

New L.L. Bean picnic table from Nana, we will assemble it today...... I was hoping she would get the directions out and put it together herself, but she seemed content to pose on the pieces and parts!

Have a great weekend!!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

New Referral - Kris is a Mommy!

We are so excited for Kris..... She lives just a couple of towns over from us......... go read her wonderful news at Tell Her This!!!

Friday, June 12, 2009

The Power of Imagination

Alyzabeth with her "homemade" binoculars :)

We can spend good money on great toys only to find that the simplest of things are so often the most fun...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Rites of Passage pt 2

continued from part 1

Most the time I knew when Dad was busy. I hadn’t thought to ask and Dad hadn’t said but then it came to me. We can’t be busy. If we were busy, Dad would be at work and there wouldn’t be any need to flip the phones. I immediately felt better. And then it hit me. What if we just got busy?

I didn’t pause long at the light switch. It was better to just get it over with. The fluorescent lights flickered, then burst on brightly. I was half out to the hallway before taking a quick, hesitant look over my shoulder. Empty. Only the hard, white glean and the unmistakable odor of chemicals. I moved to the next switch. And the next, giving one halfhearted look into the big room as I past. Also empty. Good.

I could make out the front door now and I couldn't help but think how simple this all could have been. Unlock the door, hang a right and straight in to Dad’s office. Go around behind the desk, make the flip and be gone. One, two lights at most and I was out of there. No fumbling around. No telltale odors. No pretending to be brave.

Dad’s office was always impressive to me and at the same time intimidating. I scanned the top of the desk careful to not touch anything. The thought of opening a drawer would never occur to me. What would I be looking for? Why would I be looking? I followed a simple rule. One that would keep me out of trouble. Leave Dad’s stuff alone.

I made the flip. Now to make my way out, remembering to turn the lights out behind me. Easy work until I reached that final switch. I was mad at myself for feeling scared. I'm sure my brothers never were. Once again I felt the light switch on my fingers. Come on, Ford... It’s not like someone or some thing is going to reach up and grab you from behind.

Then it was dark again.

Turns out I was right about being expected to do more. I knew this day would come. I had watched my brothers, first one and then the other, make the same rite of passage. My wait would not be a long one. Late one night, the phone rang. I heard Dad's steps making their way down the hall towards our bedrooms. The footsteps stopped.

“You need to get dressed. Elwood will pick you up. Wait on the front steps.”

It was my turn. “Yes sir,” I replied simply.

Quickly getting dressed, I made my way to the steps like Dad told me. It wasn’t long before Elwood pulled into the driveway. I opened the door and slid in beside him.

I was half expecting a surprised look on Elwood's face, seeing who it was. Instead, I was met by a knowing smile. Dad had told him it would be me on those steps.

“You ready?” Elwood asked.
“Sure," I replied to what was now my mentor. “I’m ready,” I lied…


Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Safety Around Pools

Since we have enrolled AA in the ISR self-rescue swim survival lessons, I thought I would write about pool safety. The ISR lessons are for a baby/child to survive falling into any body of water but pools are so common especially in Florida that I thought I would pass on a web site I love for it's root causes tools.
We use these "Think Reliability" tools at work and I was happy to see they have a free one on their web site on pool safety.
I hope you will download their free cause map and implement the pool safety tips.


1) Control access to the pool by using a self-latching, self-locking fence that is at least 4′ tall, that can’t be climbed. Ensure the doors open outward from the pool and have a latch out of children’s reach. Use a safety cover when the pool is not in use.
2) Employ drain safety devices such as pumps that shut off automatically when the pipes are obstructed.
3) Keep children within arm’s reach when near a pool. Don’t put in a pool for your family until your children are at least 5.
4) Keep lifesaving equipment near the pool, including a hook and an approved life-saving flotation device.
5) Don’t drink & swim, and don’t let those who have consumed alcohol near the pool.
6) Take your whole family to swimming lessons.
7) Never swim alone. Don’t let anybody else swim alone.
8) Use a pool alarm that senses water motion to determine if someone has entered the pool. Make sure it is always turned on when the pool is not in use.
9) If a child is missing, look first in the pool (most children who drown are found after 10 minutes).
10) Keep a telephone, and emergency numbers, near the pool at all times.
11) Check the water depth before diving, or don’t allow diving in your pool.
12) Learn CPR. Take your whole family (when they’re old enough) to CPR lessons, too.
13) Don’t allow running near the pool.
14) Use an absorbent material to surround the pool.
15) Use rough material around the pool (such as cement instead of tile).
16) Stay out of the pool during rain or lightning storms.
17) Keep electrical appliances away from the pool (they can cause electrocution even if they are not turned on).

Let me know if you have any others to add! Enjoy fun water activities safely!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Grand #1 Graduation from Pre-K

We attended Kilee's graduation which was actually very nice (I was wondering what one does at a "pre-K" graduation!!).
Caps and gowns were the de riguer!!

Kilee with her Aunt Leaa (our daughter; we now have permission to tell everyone that Leaa is pregnant with her second Child - our Grand #3 in December!!!).

Kilee with her Daddy (our son Justin). We are so proud of our little girl! As is her daddy :)

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Sister and Cousin Heading Back to Maine

I am still waiting on some better pictures of grand #1's pre-K graduation to post here (thus having them in my next Blurp book).
In the meantime, I must say good-bye to my sister, Melissa ("Auntie-M"). Here's some final pictures of my sister's visit along with cousin ("Auntie-C") Carolyn. Both are heading back to Maine this week! Wish they could stay!

Melissa took these pictures in the little Florida town where Carolyn was living.


Carolyn had a new hair-do while visiting with Melissa. I really like it!

The last picture has grand #1 in her new bathing suit from Great-Nana Ann of the North (held by my sister; her Daddy on the left, our son).
Wish I was spending my summer in Maine with family!