Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Help, Again...

Brock and I spent an interesting evening last month when the power went out because of a storm. We were only without power for 10 hours - it was hot and uncomfortable, but we had a roof over our heads, no loss of life, limb or any of our stuff...

We couldn't BEGIN to imagine what the people who live in the Gulf coast areas that were hit by Katrina are enduring. And, hope we never have to.

So, we are asking you to join us in helping out...spend a week bagging your lunch from home and give the money you will save to the Red Cross - and count your blessings....

The American Red Cross: 1-800-435-7669 or www.redcross.org

(Other relief agencies are listed in this article at MSNBC.com)

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Who, Me?

Who, Me? Click here to see picture!

Click the picture to see a few others...Leda actually sat without assistance for a few seconds! Wooo hooo!

Buffett!

We went to see Jimmy Buffett (4th year in a row) this past Saturday night. He, instead of playing the Tweeter Center in Camden, NJ, played the new ball park, Citizen's Bank Park, in Philly. This was the first ever concert at the ball park....well, actually, Saturday night was the 2nd concert - he played Thursday night too!

So, we met up with Bob and Linda, Kayla, Gary and Rich for a little tailgating in the rain (luckily it didn't rain the whole time, and it cleared up for the concert) and Tom and Karen met up with us just before the concert. We had okay seats (GREAT seats for a ball game, not so great seats for Buffett) - they were quite some ways away from the stage, which was in center field. And, Jimmy came out shortly after 8pm...and he was great - the acoustics, they sucked! And, unfortunatly, for a short while, the video and audio didn't match up!

Jimmy WAS great - I mean, if you know your Buffett, the audio can suck, it don't matter, you still sing along with it! But it was kinda disappointing that they hadn't figured out from Thursday night how to make the sound better. In any case, the song selection was awesome (he did my all-time favorite, "One Particular Harbour" and "Southern Cross" for the first encore!). He had a tribute to Johnny Carson video play just before they came back from intermission that introduced the first song of the second set, "Let's get drunk and screw." Always love his suggestion to parents who bring their kids to hold their hands over the kids ears! That will be Brock and I in a few years when we take Leda!! ;-)

He did a second encore when he came out and played Bruce's "Glory Days." That was kinda interesting, but considering he's doing a lot of ball parks this time around, I guess it makes sense. I let Brock lead me out of the stadium then (he get's antsy...HATES the traffic!) but we watched from the concorse on the way out. And, at the end of the song, BONUS - FIREWORKS!!! I didn't get to see fireworks this year, so this was particularly awesome for me! Buffett AND Fireworks! WOW! And, the fireworks were REALLY CLOSE and REALLY LOUD...EVEN BETTER!!!! (you probably all know how much I LOVE the loud boomer ones! There were LOTS of those!!)

So, we got back to the car in record time, got in, pulled out and were on the 76 within 5 minutes....WOW!! That, in a million years, will NEVER happen again, so I hope Brock enjoyed it! Seriously, we told Megan (our babysitter) that we would be back NOT before 12, but hopefully before 1...we waked in the house at 11:45!! Cool!

Anyway, to sum up (and no, I don't believe there was a sentry in this story!) (inside joke, some of you will get, others just ignore)...Jimmy Buffett, Good; Citizen's Bank Park, Good; Jimmy Buffett at Citizen's Bank Park - not the best, but it did in a pinch. Hope he comes back next year to the Tweeter, or else, we are heading back up to Jones Beach to see him like we did last year (great venue!)

Friday, August 26, 2005

Groveling...

My family members have become quite accustom to receiving their birthday cards from me late...several days late! In fact, so used to this practice of mine they were, that last year, when I actually sent the card so it arrived BEFORE the special event, they all thought something was wrong with me (it was, I was pregnant!).

I DO, however, ALWAYS remember to call on the special day to wish them a Happy Birthday and inform them that the "cards are in the mail!"

Now, I always (and, knowing what you already know from the first paragraph, you probably will not believe this) purchase the birthday cards AT LEAST 3 weeks ahead of said birthday with EVERY intention of having them signed, sealed and delivered by the special day! I have even purchased cards MONTHS ahead of birthdays that I forgot and purchased a second card!!

So, 4 weeks ago - YES, FOUR WEEKS AGO - Leda and I are out at Target. I think forward into August and figure I'd better purchase birthday cards for my brother-in-law, Kurt. So Leda and I browse through the card section (do you know that there are really very little "Uncle" cards out there???) and pick out two, one for a brother-in-law and one for an Uncle...His VERY.FIRST.UNCLE card (and, boy was I happy with my pick!). We come home and I place cards in a very prominent place in the dining room and tell Leda to remind me to sign and send them.

Last night, I am cleaning the dining room and come across the very prominent place in said dining room, where I pick up the cards to clean underneath them - two seconds later I realize that I have FORGOTTEN TO SEND THE DARN CARDS!!!! Leda totally forgot to remind me!

Not only have I FORGOTTEN TO SEND THE DARN CARDS - I TOTALLY FORGOT TO CALL!!!

Kurt's birthday was Monday.

I am a dufus!

Happy Birthday Uncle Kurt! The cards are in the mail! Love ya!

Thursday, August 25, 2005

4 Months Old!

Wow! We've reached 4 months without any serious mishaps! Great!

Leda's growing and becoming more of a little person than a newborn baby now! She's definitely developing a personality, and so far, it looks pretty good! She is quite happy, which bodes well for us.

We had our 4 month doctor visit yesterday. We are officially 16lbs, 7oz (Mommy was off by quite a bit! I thought for sure she'd be 18 pounds!) and 25 inches (I still think she's closer to 26, but oh well!). The doctor said she's a perfectly healthy little girl who will stop sleeping through the night at 8 months! I said, What?!?!? He said, I just want you to come back in here and tell me I was wrong! Let me tell ya, I was sweating it there for a moment. Actually, we were all sweating...we apparently were put in the one exam room that had a broken air conditioning system, so it was HOT in there! Leda smiled and did a little belly laugh for Dr. and he told us that we can expect her to start "scooting" any time now...he said she was quite strong for her age, and when he checked how she was on her belly, she basically held herself up with her arms and knees...she could have started crawling right then and there!

Well, the dr. declared her healthy and the nurse was sent back in for the 4 shots! Bad Nurse! (actually, love the nurse - she's the only one that has seen Leda since she left the hospital and she's really great) Anyway, I decided I would hold her this time, I mean, it's not fair that Brock has to hold her EVERY time she get's shots, right. So I held her, Brock held her leg and the nurse gives her the first shot. Leda looks at her with this look like, "hey, what ya do that for?" but didn't cry. The second one, the SCREAMING commenced! I mean, I had never heard this child scream and cry like she did yesterday! The nurse quickly gave her the other two shots and crawled out of the room. Leda was screaming, I was trying not to cry myself and Brock is kinda laughing at us. It took us a bit to get her to calm down enough to catch her breathe, and the nurse came back in to get Brock to sign the shot paperwork - Leda didn't see her, but heard her, and the SCREAMING commenced! I am pretty sure the nurse felt like dirt! I know I pretty much had to be scrapped off the floor by the time we left the exam room. Not only did our little girl hurt, but it was HOT as HELL in that room!

Anyway, we did get her calmed down, Brock took her home, I went back to work and later in the evening, Leda was no worse for the wear, albeit, a bit tired from the day’s events...we slept right through the night without a peep. And, we woke up happier than a pig in...well, you know!

AND, I announced to Brock last night, that he will be holding Leda every time she gets a shot from now on!! ;-)

Leda belly laughs, she's started squealing with delight (which is the absolute COOLEST thing!), she definitely recognizes Mom and Dad, and she's fascinated by Duff (who is most times indifferent to her, but does, on occasion, seem to love her as much as he loves us! He is REALLY patient with her when she grabs a hold of his hair!) She loves watching the fish, and really doesn't know we have a cat (but then again, most of our family and friends don't know we have a cat! ;-)

We are looking forward to heading up to the Thousand Islands during Labor Day week...we will be doing NOTHING for 6 full days!! It will be nice! (well, we will be visiting some Canadian friends, and Leda will be taking her first trip out of the country (COOL! Her first stamp in her BRAND NEW PASSPORT!!), but other than that, no plans to do anything but NOTHING!!)

But, we still have a week to go and plenty of stuff happening (Jimmy Buffett sighting this weekend!!!!) so, stay tuned!

Happy Birthday, Leda!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Update on feeding Leda cereal

This is going pretty darn well. We'll have to see if the doctor yells at us for starting this earlier than I think he would have liked, but Leda is taking to being fed cereal REALLY WELL...she opens WIDE for each spoonful! Sometimes, before she swallows the previous one!

Anyway, here's a picture from her first meal. It did go MUCH better than she's letting on!

First Meal

And, here's a Happy Baby...a few days after her first meal!

Happy Baby

Couldn't let her grow up without getting one of those toothless grins! She's so cute!

4 month Doctor Appointment tomorrow! We get to find out how much we weigh (which is probably about 18 pounds!!!) We also get another round of shots (4 this time, I think) NOT looking forward to that.) Will be sure to post an update!!

Another reason to love the French

Books in vending machines!!!

"Can't Wait for a Book? Paris Can Help"

How cool is that?? Now, getting a book is as easy as getting a soda!

Now, I am not exactly sure why you might want to get toilet paper from a vending machine, but I am pretty sure I don't WANT to know! ;-)

Monday, August 15, 2005

Food Fight

Well, sorta.

Leda had cereal this weekend! (Pictures to be posted later)

We liked it, we didn't like it, we liked it. We got it everywhere we could reach!

By last night, the third time we tried, she was opening her mouth and excited about receiving the spoon...not so excited about what was on the spoon, but hey, that's a start!

Today: just give us the bottle, Dad...none of that spoon thing! Give us the real stuff!

We'll practice a few more times and see how we do. Check back for updates! ;-)

Friday, August 12, 2005

Odds n Ends...

*A part of this area's history is going away...Strawbridge’s will be no longer after next year. I don't know whether or not to be depressed or just get over it. Strawbridge’s is the last connection we have to Strawbridge and Clothier, and John Wanamaker’s! That means that the old John Wanamaker’s building in Philly will end up a Macy's! Yuck! (I don't do much shopping at Strawbridge’s...but it is just soothing to know that it's there. Now, it just feels like my childhood is fading away to nothing!) ;-(

*TO is the biggest, whiniest, pain in the you know what, athlete EVER! The Eagles need to sit him out this year - let him ponder how to use the 7+ mil he made last season to "feed his family" - give me a freaking break...and now, he heads off to the Bahamas during his suspension from camp - yeah, dude, first of all, there's a hurricane coming and second of all, which family member doesn't eat this week so you can go "work on your tan?"??? If I were making $19,000 A. DAY!!! I don't think I'd be complaining. Sit him out...don't trade him, don't settle for another contract, sit him out and get rid of him after the season is over. Let him stew in his own juices for a season - see who takes him next year! What a dufus! I can't believe I dare say this, but I'd forfeit the darned Super Bowl just to see this guy get his just desserts. (Nope, not angry about it at all! ;-)

*What is it about the rear end of my car that everyone who follows me MUST follow so darned close???? Geez! Back off!

*And, you there, who doesn't stop at that darned stop sign and makes ME have to hit my brakes as I am coming down the hill toward you - ARE. YOU. FREAKING. NUTS???? There's a reason for that stop sign. There's a reason why you need to STOP. AND. LOOK! Use the brain God gave you. You obviously have one, if the State of Pennsylvania gave you a driver's license (cough, cough, snicker, snicker).

Just a few things to get off my chest! Friday seemed like a good time to do it! Have a great weekend!

Daddy and Daughter

Brock and Leda at the beach

Leda and the Sea

What a great week!

We went to the seashore this past week (for five days, actually) and boy, did we have fun!

We arrived at the beach house on Saturday late morning - boy was it HOT! We usually go down around the beginning of July, so this was a different weather feeling for us! Thank goodness for air conditioning! Anyway, we unpacked and hung out, tried to stay cool.

My MO at the beach is a bit different than anywhere else...this is the only place I wake up early - without prompting! (of course, I wake up early all the time now! ;-) I usually head down the beach early in the morning, even before Brock wakes! Well, not this year! I have Leda to thank for that (and I really don't mind!)

So, Sunday morning, up early, feed Leda and then I head off to Kohlers to sit outside to hope I get a good number for KOHLER DONUTS!!!! Woo Hoo! I am back by quarter after 8! And Leda goes down for a nap, so I finally get to go for my walk on the beach around 9ish...a little late, as high tide is coming in, so not really good for beach combing - but hey, I got to do my communing with nature thing!

Sunday at noon we head to the beach. It was a little overcast, which was actually a good thing, since it was so darned hot! When the Sun wasn't out, it felt better! The water was a little chilly on Sunday (it was probably about 70 degrees!) so, when we attempted to introduce Leda to the ocean for the first time, she found it a little lacking! She cried everytime we put her feet in the water - take her out, she stopped, put her in, she started! It was quite funny. Anyway, we had a little bit of lunch on the beach, Chris, the Durhams and the Shiers joined us, and then, the thunder rolled in!! I got a bit freaked out, figuring we had to pack everything up and get the kid back to the house before the skys opened up, so, after about an hour on the beach, we packed up and right about the time we were leaving, the lifeguards had everyone out of the water and were suggesting we leave the beach for our safety!

The rest of Sunday, we hung out at the house. It barely rained! After all that! And, it didn't get much cooler either!

Monday was a nice day! At least, the morning was. The afternoon was nice, just not as sunny. We headed out on the boat with the Durhams and Chris. This was going to be John's first trip to the ocean on his boat! It was quite exciting! Will he or won't he, that was the question!

Leda had to wear a horrible lifejacket - she fussed for a few minutes as we were leaving the dock, but soon fell into a sorta sleeping state (opening one eye every so often to check to see if I was still there). We headed out and go to the inlet, and John went for it! We ended up out in the ocean for a little while before we headed back. It was kinda fun! Leda liked it!





John on the ocean
John on the ocean - that would be Avalon behind him! Look, he's smiling too!
Leda on the boat, on the ocean
Leda, getting a little breather in that hot lifejacket! She likes the boat!


So, we had a great day on the bay and the ocean! We headed back in so we could beat low tide and proceeded home for naps - most everyone did have a nap, before we headed over to the Shier's for a little Seafood Feast! We had a couple of cocktails as Brock cooked seafood (scallops, clams, shrimp and flounder, Oh My!). Leda got a little off schedule and we had forgotten to bring her bottle, so, after the child started screaming, I drove her home (only a 30 or so block drive) for dinner, and then back, sleeping away, so Mommy could have a little seafood! It was a little cold, but it was really good, and everyone had a good time!

Tuesday wasn't such a great day! It rained pretty much all day long - but, you know what I like to say, "A bad day at the beach is SO much better than a great day at work!!" I did a little tour of some of the art galleries and bought a sweatshirt and t-shirts for Leda and I. Around lunch time, we headed over to the Cape May County Park and Zoo...yes, there's a zoo in Cape May (Court House, actually) - And not just some petting zoo, but a full fledged zoo, with Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My! Like something like 150 animals! And, it's free!!!! A donation is all that is asked for at the entrance, and that is at your discretion! So, we toured the zoo with Chris, the Durhams and the Shiers! We had fun...in the rain! Leda didn't get much out of it, as she really could care less about animals just yet (although she does show interest in Duff!)

We had planned to head to Wildwood for dinner, but the rain just got harder in the afternoon, so we had the Shiers over for pizza and a movie - Meet the Fockers - what a hilarious movie! I love Dustin Hoffman!

Wednesday was packing day, but we headed down to the beach in the late morning before we had to pack and go. The day was just BEAUTIFUL.
A GREAT day at the beach

The day was hot, but there was enough of a breeze on the beach to make it comfortable. And the water was like 81 degrees!!! Leda liked it!


Leda checking out the surf Big Waves
Leda out in the surf with Daddy!


We had a nice couple of hours on the beach with the Durham's. Leda seemed to enjoy herself more this time around - she cried a little toward the end of the time in the water, but she did seem to like it more - we got a smile or two out of her! We met a little boy Matt and his mother. Matt's mom said that he was about Leda's age when she introduced him to the ocean and now, she can't get him out of it! Just what we are hoping for!

Leda

Leda got a little tired from her swim in the ocean, so we headed back for our cabana (best $70 ever spent - get yourself one - www.onestepahead.com) and she promptly rolled over and took a nap!


Leda - worn out! Leda - taking a snooze in the cabana


The Durhams had some fun on the beach too!
The Durhams

Alas, our time at the beach was short, we needed to pack up and come home, which we did late Wed.

Leda had fun down the beach, and her schedule really didn't get too screwed up, and she slept through the night just fine! She started sucking her thumb a little while we were down there, started giggling (almost belly laughs, which made Mommy laugh and cry at the same time!) when Mommy would tickle her tummy! She has started to want to go to sleep with a blanket held tightly between her fingers! Just like Mommy was! She also, is definitely her mother's daughter - she slept late when allowed to! ;-) I can't wait to get Leda down there when she's a little older and can go beach combing with Mommy!

I think my record for reading books down the beach is like 9 in one week...this year, I think I got one and a half chapters of the new Harry Potter completed!! (DON'T ANYONE SAY ANYTHING...it could be MONTHS before I finish the Harry Potter book, so DON'T TELL ME ANYTHING!!!!) I didn't even get to read a James Patterson book at the beach - Oh, The Horror! Oh well, sooner or later, I will get to read again! (and not just Goodnight Moon!)

We had a blast. We are definitely heading back down next year! and the year after that, and the year after that.....

Thursday, August 11, 2005

To hold you over...

Working on the "story" of Leda's FIRST EVER trip to the seashore...definitely not the last!

To hold you over until then....

Leda out on the ocean on the Durham's boat....
Leda

Friday, August 5, 2005

TGIF!!!

Happy Happy, Joy Joy!

Doing the happy dance...it's Friday and we are goin' to the shore!

Leda meets the Ocean this weekend! Woooo Hooo! She's quite excited! ;-)

And the dog is waiting by the front door!

Hasn't been much to post about this week. And there won't be much posting until late next week.

So, have a look at Duff on the beach - last year's trip to Avalon. Taken at sunrise on our last day at the beach...took Duff down to the beach very early to avoid being caught! He loves the beach!

Avalon, July 2004

Lifeguard on Duty

Back next week with LOTS of baby pictures!

Monday, August 1, 2005

Help, Now!

Don't know if anyone who stops here has heard, but there is awful things happening in Africa.

I remember years and years ago...if I didn't finish my dinner...my mother would say to me, "there are starving children in Africa."

There still are starving children in Africa.

I hope to NEVER have to tell Leda that when she hasn't finished her meal.

Help, Now! Go donate a few bucks, and bag your lunch for a week.

UNICEF
Save the Children
Oxfam International

There's lots of others out there taking donations. We've donated to UNICEF and Save the Children.

Do it to save a child's life. If for nothing else, do it for the tax deduction.

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