March 31, 2006

So, Freaking, Funny

http://www.break.com/index/scaretactics.html

Saw this on VH1, had to share.

Wazoo

Geez guys, I'm really slacking, eh?

It's been so nice out that I haven't been staying home in the afternoons, and I found a computer game to play for a little while when I have some downtime at night. I think I'm gonna try to cut out the gaming though, as the game (Neverwinter Nights) is fun, but not really something I feel is really worth my time.

There's a lot to do, and I gotta get moving. I've lapsed into doing the least amount of work that I can, and that's gotta stop. My family needs me to put in more than this. We have a house to sell, and some other big projects.

We're gonna get it all done, I just need to actually get off my bum and get working.

March 28, 2006

Goal Achieved

I've made myself recognizable (or annoying) enough over the phone that the people at my insurance company, and at the oil change place, know me by my first name.

Sweet.

March 24, 2006

"Bus Me!"

Marion is a bus addict.

We've started taking the bus to get around when we're downtown, and it's been lots of fun for everyone. First of all, the bus that just cicles around the downtown area (a pretty big loop, and it goes to lots of places we want to go) is free, so we can use it whenever, and secondly, the kids love it.

Marion loves to sit and stare out the window as things pass by (and excitedly say 'Bus, Me!' whenever we see another bus), and Henry likes to push the tell-the-driver-to-stop button. I try to limit his pressings to just when we actually want to get off the bus, but I can't always hold him back.

March 18, 2006

Pre-verbal Child Communicates

We've been using baby-sign with Marion since she was a wee lass, and we've found it to be very useful. She's able to tell us when she wants more of something, when she's all done, when she has to go potty, and communicate various other important messages. I haven't tried to take a picture of her signing (I just never thought of it), but I happened to catch one the other day.

She wanted to sing the Ring Around the Rosie song again, but because I was trying to take a picture she thought I was done. So, she said 'more' with her hands. It was very cute, even though she looked so sad doing it.



We took care of it though, doing more ringing around the rosie until everyone fell down.

March 17, 2006

Stair-Master v2.0

Way back in the days of yore, I knew a little girl who loved to climb the steps. Now we have two stair-masters.

Henry has long been going up the stairs, but yesterday he made the discovery of going down the stairs in a controlled fashion. I'm so proud of him, he's as mobile as a baby can be without switching over to the toddler phase.

I don't have a picture of him on the stairs yet, but here he is, showing off his climbing skills:

March 14, 2006

A Little Mother/Daughter Deliberation

March 13, 2006

Henry at Nine Months

As of 3/13, Henry is nine months old, and he's cruisin' along the growing up path quickly, so I thought you might enjoy a little Henry-review, before we moved on.

He's very mobile now, as he's been crawling for a couple of months, and he's a pro on the stairs. He can go up all of the stairs in our house without help, but hasn't figured out how to go down yet.

He's noisy, laughing, giggling, babbling, and growling like a puppy. It's weird to have this small boy crawling around and growling as he moves past you. It's cute too, and it helps me to keep track of him even when I'm looking elsewhere.

It appears that he's working to catch up on the teeth issue. Henry started getting his first two teeth later than Marion did (I hear boys are generally slower in this kind of thing), and he popped out his bottom front teeth just about a week ago. Two nights ago we noticed that he had a top tooth poking through, which surprised us because it was out of order. Usually this tooth comes in as the 7th or 8th tooth, and here it is cutting in line to number three. Crazy tooth. I'm sure he'll have a bunch of other teeth soon.

And because of all his teeth he loves to stick out his tongue and feel them, which makes for some funny pictures, and keeps him droolling like a madman.

Of all of the things that he does, he enjoys watching Marion the most. When she starts running around or dancing, he couldn't be happier, and once she notices that he's laughing because of her, it encourages her to keep doing whatever she's doing. It's really great to see them interact, and I hope they can continue to bring joy to each other.

Like Stillwater

When Marion woke up at 5am and decided, like any find toddler might, that it was time to get up, I got upset. In my adult world, it wasn't time to wake up, it was sleepy time. I shouldn't get upset, I shouldn't get angry, that only makes things worse.

So I thought about someone that doesn't get upset, some kind of codeword that I could switch myself into not being upset, and I came up with Stillwater. I met Stillwater (the Giant Panda) in a book called Zen Shorts which I picked up from the Yspi District Library. It's a beautiful book, with wonderful watercolor illustrations, and a great story. The bear shows us different approaches for reacting to the events in our world, and it makes such sense.

I want to be like Stillwater, unperturbed by the events of my day, and pleased with the outcomes. I can do it, I just have to shift my thinking. I need to visualize myself as a giant panda bear, with lots of compassion.

March 10, 2006

Long Overdue

Just like some of my library books, a change to the layout of OpenAppleDumb has long been overdue. I finally got around to making something happen.

It's not fully mine, so don't heap too much praise on me. Blogger offered some templates, and I just edited the one that I disliked the least. Changed some colors here, adjusted the width there, replaced some images...wazoo, a new page.

Let me know if anything is messed up. The only thing that (I think) might be messed up is the list of archives over on the right.

I hope you like it.

March 07, 2006

Beautiful Girl, Wonderful Camera

MORE!

Marion enjoying some Daddy play time:


Henry in his favorite tongue-out over new teeth pose:


Marion with a big smile:

March 06, 2006

Borrowed Camera

Yippy! We've finally borrowed a camera from a friend, which means we'll have some pictures of Marion and Henry again!



Yes, Henry is wearing a pink bib, that's the luck you get when you have an older sister. And, the bruise on his forehead is compliments of her too.

A Fine Open House

We had people, we had many people, maybe not droves of people, but they did overlap at one point. Yesterday we had four different visits (3 couples and one real estate agent), and it was our best open house by far.

The people really seemed to like the house, and one couple asked how soon we could be out of the house. That's a good sign, I believe. It's very exciting, certainly more exciting than the open houses where we didn't have anyone stopping by.

I also had the chance to go over to Touchstone (the cohousing community that we're moving to), and it re-reinforced our decision to move. As I walked from one building to wherever I was headed, I'd always run into someone that I knew, and everyone not only had time to chat, but they wanted to. Certainly this won't always be the case, people will be busy sometimes, but the fact that I already know our soon-to-be-neighbors (moreso than I know most of our neighbors here, after 2.5 years) is great, and I'm excited about living in the community.

March 03, 2006

Lost to Milwaukee

The Mothering Arts group lost one of our good friends to Milwaukee. Erin and her son James (and their yet-to-be-born child) are moving to the edge of lake Michigan, and far far away from us. Erin's husband captured a great job with Harley Davidson which necessitated the move.

This is the first loss, of the not just-fading-away kind, to our group, and it's pretty sad. Erin is a shining example of joyful parenting, and her presence will be missed at our future gatherings.

Marion will especially miss Erin, because over the past year and a half Erin and Marion have become good friends. It was great to see Marion offering one of her rare kisses to Erin as she left the 'Goodbye' party last night, and it was also very sad. We'll see her again, probably in about a month, but we won't ever get the chance to see her every week.

James is as fun of a toddler as you could ask for, and terribly cute, especially with his new haircut. We'll miss the cool shirts that he always had, and the constant question of "whas this?".

Best of luck, to Erin, James, and Matt, as they create a new life in a new state. May there be moms, dads, toddlers, and babies for them to play with. Thanks for the memories.

March 01, 2006

Pee-Free Night

Marion went all night without peeing in her diaper! What a wonderful surprise! She went to bed at 8:15pm, and woke up at 7:45am, and was pee-free. I took her to the potty in the morning and she peed a lot, and clapped for herself.

What a great way to start the day.