Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Gotta Win a Stroller

Over at Momdot right now, the mommy bloggers there are going insane by running a LIVE $500 Toro Stroller Contest right now. So head on over to enter quickly .And if you happen to miss it, just hang out, list your blog for free, read a feature, leave a comment, or join the mommy bloggers forum! MomDot Rocks!

Monday, September 29, 2008

For Daddy

I can't remember who suggested this, but this evening the girls and I couldn't resist. Don't worry dear, as you can see he HATED it. And he definitely did NOT cry when we took it off.

Big Thank You

The kids and I wanted to thank our visitors (Gramma, Grandpa, Uncle Mac, Nami, Nana and Cara) for this past weekend. The tea party would not have been the same without any of you. We loved having you but, as usual, it went by much too fast. 

An extra special thank you goes out to Grandpa, who apparently told the girls they could have ice cream every night.  Thank you so much for THAT. 

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Brain Freeze

Michael had his first popsicle. I tried to warn him. "Don't eat it too fast," I said.
He didn't listen. And then it happened....
Brain freeze. 
In case you are wondering, his brain has thawed and he has made a full recovery. He will eat popsicles again. 

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Monday, September 15, 2008

Nuts Over Noodleboro

We received a game in the mail not too long ago, and lets just say it has become a mild obsession in our house. It also came with a CD and a book to read along, so if we aren't playing, we are reading about it or listening to it. 

Yes, it is safe to say the Noodleboro game is a big hit. There are three different available that are meant to teach kids about sharing, listening and manner. We received the sharing Fun Park, which consists of 4 carnival type games where the the kids win prizes, but are encouraged to share the prizes with others. The concept of sharing is reinforced in the book and on the CD as well. 

You can enter to win one of 200 Noodleboro games that are being raffled off by Mom Central. Click this link and enter to win! 

I can't recommend this game enough. The girls absolutely love it. It is for 2 - 4 players, so I can play with them or they can play with eachother (which, surprisingly, they do without much arguing). 

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Greatest Show on Earth

I want to go to the circus!!! I say this every time I see a billboard, a TV commercial or read a newspaper ad telling me the circus is coming to town. I remember going as a child, everything right down to the unicorn toy that I brought home. 

And of course, I would just love to be able to take the kids. They offer a Baby's First Circus Program that allows you to sign up your baby (up to 12 months old) and you will get a voucher for a free ticket and a special certificate. 

As you can see by the show dates below, the circus isn't coming near our neck of the woods anytime soon. But I thought I would pass on this schedule and even a coupon code to save you some money.  

If you make it, send me some pictures. 

Grand Rapids, MI - Sept. 18-21, 2008
Denver, CO - Oct. 2-13, 2008
Boston, MA - Oct. 8-13, 2008
Cleveland, OH - Oct. 24 - Nov. 2, 2008
Chicago, IL - Nov. 6-30, 2008
St. Louis, MO - Nov. 6-9, 2008
Auburn Hills, MI - Nov. 12-16, 2008
Highland Heights, KY - Feb. 27-March 1, 2009
Cincinnati, OH - March 4-8, 2008

Use the coupon code MCC to get 20% off the ticket price in these cities. 

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Sleepy Boy

A morning of errands was a bit too much for this little guy to handle. We had just come out of the post office and about 3.2 seconds after I put him in his carseat, he crashed. 

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Responsibility Project

When Grace started kindergarten, we were introduced to the Unseen Guest Program sponsored by St. Anne's. Families from the school prepare meals for those who come to the church because they are hungry. The kids and I picked up a stack of containers the other day, and came home and cooked meals that we froze and will turn in to be handed out as needed.

I thought this would be a great way to start teaching the kids about helping others, especially since they will never see those they are helping. I wanted them to understand helping others for the sake of helping, not because you will get something in return or even see the results. Now, at almost 5 and 3, I am not sure they totally "get it." But it is a start. 

Liberty Mutual would like to teach people the same sort of things, and have started The Responsibility Project to do just that. At their site, you can watch short videos, meant to teach the lessons of personal responsibility and paying-it-forward. There are also discussion guides and a blog to help parents find ways to talk to their kids about why taking personal responsibility for ourselves and the world around us is so important.

It is not easy explaining to kids that the right things may not always be the most popular, or that just because someone may be willing to do something for you doesn't mean that you should help yourself as well. And these lessons are not learned overnight, but will come from constant guidance and attention from parents and families. Liberty Mutual understands this, and their Responsibility Project is a big step in the right direction. 

Take a look at their site. It is the responsible thing to do. 


I am not really sure why it is, but wildlife of all types seems to be drawn to my house. Since I am not such a fan of wildlife in general, and certain creatures (which shall remain nameless) in particular, I need to find something to keep these unwanted visitors away. Any suggestions?

Bambi and company keep finding their way to my yard, eating the hosta and whatever else they feel like nibbling on. Doesn't bother me all that much, but they drive George insane. I thought he was going to jump right through the window when I took this picture.
And then there are the frogs that like to congregate on the back door and windows. This one was a bit camera shy, but daily there are at least two that hang out on the doors out to the deck and you never know if they are going to jump on you as you walk out the door. (You may wonder why on earth I would be going out there in the first place, but so far George has been unwilling to  learn to use the toilet. We are working on it. )
The newest addition is this "little" beauty that has made a nice web on the back screen door. I say little, but it really is the biggest spider I have ever seen. Now, I loved Charlotte's Web as much as the next guy, but unless I come down in the morning and "domestic goddess" is written in the web, the spider as got to go. 

I just don't understand why? Why me? Why my house? The green mystery moth was enough. The giant snake in the garage was WAY more then enough. 

Seriously? My house? Didn't these creatures get the memo? I DON'T LIKE YOU. Go away.  

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Blue Tulips

Thank you, Nami! Grace and Belle LOVED their blue tulip lollipops. 

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Mystery Solved

It seems our creature is a moth. Click this link to see more. It is no where near as evil looking during the day. Go figure. 

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Name That Creature

Can anyone tell me what the heck this thing is? It keeps coming to my window at night. The wings flapping  sound like 47 field mice tap dancing on my window. 
A few stats: it is green, at least the size of my hand, and the red eyes cannot be removed with the red-eye remover on my computer (I am pretty sure that is a sign of pure evil).
I am not sure if those are legs or part or the wings. 
I just really need to know what the heck it is. Some sort of bat maybe? Any help you can provide, oh loyal readers, would be greatly appreciated. 

The Boy Has Just About Had Enough

This is the face of a boy who has had it with his Mama giving him kisses. Sorry, Michael. There is no end in sight. 

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

First Day of School

Here is Grace ready to go to Kindergarten. She was so excited to finally wear the uniform outfit that she picked out two months ago when they arrived in the mail. She planned out her first three days the first time she tried them on. 
And here is Miss Annabelle, excited to go back to preschool. She will only be going three days a week again this year. I don't think Michael and I are ready for her to go all week yet. 
They skipped all the way to the car. (For those of you that know about the intruder I happened upon in the garage, you understand why we are going out the front door. )
This is a picture of Grace during her orientation. The kindergarten classroom is pretty small, so a mini loft was installed. The kids love it, except for the one or two who are too tall to stand up straight. 

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Best Buddies

Book Review: The Dangerous Days of Daniel X

I really want to raise readers. It is important to me that my kids like to read and like to talk about what they read as well. So far, the girls love to pour over books themselves and love even more to have someone read to them. I am hoping that Michael will follow in their footsteps as he gets older, and I think books like this one will help ensure that is happens. 

The father of a 10 year old son, James Patterson has taken the challenge of engaging reluctant readers with his writing, making it incredibly visual, reminding many of comic books and action movies.  (He is pretty successful with the adult crowd already, so why not branch out?)

It begins with the death of Daniel's parents, and what follows are his adventures in finding those responsible. A lot of action, drama, and a bit of humor follow along with this wonderful character. 

While at first glance, it may seem that story line may bend toward the male gender, but I have to admit I was taken in.  It was fast paced and made me stay involved, wanting to know what was going to happen next. Normally science fiction would not be something I would seek out, but good writing is good writing, and this did not disappoint. 

If you are looking for something to engage your reluctant reader, or to fulfill someone with an interest in action from beginning to end, pick up a copy of The Dangerous Days of Daniel X by James Patterson.