Wednesday, February 27, 2008

(pre)school

so i've been thinking alot about sending Mayden to preschool next year. Chris and i both had mostly negative school experiences which have effected us greatly. so sending May to school is something we talk about often and do not take lightly. there are three main reasons i think it would be a good idea.

#1. socialization skills for May. throughout the week she doesn't see many kids her age and really doesn't know how to play well with others yet. i think i'd feel different if i was watching some kids her age or if she had cousins we saw often etc. i try very hard to get to church each Sunday mostly so that she can attend nursery where she interacts with a few other kids her age. i just wonder if once a week is enough.
#2. practice for Kindergarten. as of right now we're planning on sending our kids to public elementary school then probably homeschooling from middle school on up. so i feel like sending her into Kindergarten with absolutely no preparation is not fair to her.
#3. a break for me :o)

the problem is that i'm very picky about everything. first of all i don't want her to go anymore then 3 half days a week. i'd like the school to be less then 20 minutes way and finally i need this to be cheap or free. on top of that i want the environment to be completely loving, positive, creative & progressive thinking. the public school system has a program here designed for kids who are educationally at risk of falling thru the cracks. it's free and that's great but it's 5 days a week ALL day.... no way!

if money was no object (which it is) my first choices would be these:
Montessori Academy- this is located right next door to my parents house. in fact we play on their playground and feed their goats often.
Friends Academy- i love their values and feel like my kids would gain a lot from being there.

but these are much to expensive and even with a scholarship i don't think we could pull it off. why can't public schools be great? this of course is another great conundrum... if we want public schools to be better we need to send our kids to public schools right? if we homeschool/private school all the "good" kids then of course they are going to go to crap. but do i want my kid to have to suffer in the name of making a [slight] change? that's a hard one.

Monday, February 25, 2008

weekend happenings

DOHNERS- we finally had our Christmas get-together with the Dohner clan. great food great people what more can you ask for? they have a new addition in their family... a 300lb beautiful brown horse! i can't wait for spring so we can spend more time in their ever expanding backyard/farm.









PF CHANGS- yesterday we were able to snag Danica to watch our kids while Chris and i went out to eat at PF Changs. neither of us have ever been there before but we'd both wanted to give it a try. Chris ordered the 'Double Pan-Friend Noodles' w/ shrimp and i got 'Vegetarian Ma Po Tofu' (i think i learned the Chinese word for spicy...Ma Po...whoa!). they serve family style so we we're able to share and they were both great dishes. then we splurged on dessert (something we never do) and ordered the Banana Spring Rolls.... OH MY LORD!!!! sooooooooooooo good!!! i'm tempted to go back just for that desert. wow.


YOGURT- i found this great new yogurt for babies under 1 year. i was so excited about this find, unfortunately Cameron wasn't quite as excited as i was. he is not digging it at all! poor guy. i'll try a few bites again over the next few days but i don't think he's going to change his mind about this one.

DEATH OF A SALESMAN SNOWMAN:

so sad. Mayden isn't very happy about this new development. i keep assuring her that next time it snows (in 2010??) we'll make another one.





EXERCISE- last week was bad. i missed 3 of 7 days at the gym. plus i ate really poorly. i didn't loose a single pound and i'm beginning to think my theory of 'eat whatever you want and just add exercise = weight lose' is wrong?!?! i guess im going to have to start eating healthy or i'll just be undoing all the work i do at the gym. but i love sugar....i really do! i went this morning and i'm starting to feel like i can redeem myself. pray for me :o)

Friday, February 22, 2008

snow day

yea!!! we finally got some decent snow! snow is the one thing i look forward to in the winter but this year has been really lacking in the snow department. this morning we awoke to 3-4 inches of the white stuff. not much time was wasted before we jumped outside to play. since we haven't had more then a flurry this season and we'll probably not see anymore this year we did everything snow related that we could think of. built a snowman, made snow angels, went for a sled ride, had a snowball fight and finished it up with a cup of hot chocolate.

this was Cameron's first real snowfall and he was very into it! he kept looking like he was thinking "what genius came up with this idea? brilliant!". at one point he even fell into the snow face first (i know, good job mom!) and he didn't even shed a tear.














Thursday, February 21, 2008

ask questions

so here is a bit of seriousness for you. i'm not sugesting that everything depicted in this video(s) is true, but it makes you question...and questioning is always a good thing.

4 part mini movie


part 1



part 2



part 3



part 4

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

funny funny funny

this is my favorite superbowl ad this year. every time i see it crack up!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

big day for May-May

Mayden got her haircut for the first time (thanks to Aunt Neeka!!....newely engaged Aunt Neeka that is :o) and then she picked out some big girl underware!!

more pictures... i can't stop!









Monday, February 18, 2008

pee, speed walking & teeth brushing

i've turned up the heat on my exercise regement this week. last week was mostly medium pace walking, about 3 miles an hour (but i only went for 30 min so i'd get a mile and 1/2 done). this week i'm officially doing that fast walking that looks so ridiculous that you make fun of the person in your head as you pass by them. you know you do. anyway i went 2 miles in about 35 minutes and i gotta tell you it felt so good. the stress is rolling right off me. i will be skinny(er) in no time... if i could just stop eating sweets!!!

Mayden's potty training has taken off and we are in full swing. in fact i think today we will be going to the store to pick out some new big girl underware!! if she has no diaper on she will go on the potty, but if she has a diaper on she just goes in her diaper so i'm trying to keep her naked as much as possible for now. her reward? Jr. Mints. we should really invest in them because we are going thru them like nothing!


here are some pictures and a video from yesterady:



it was a beautiful 60 degree day, these are pics taken in our front yard right before a nasty little storm rolled in.


Cameron has been brushing his teeth and he's getting very good at it.

video


us eating dinner in the play tent (May= fake chicken nuggets, me= tuna casserole, Cam= mashed peas)


the end.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

good eats

this year (actually i guess it was technically last year?) one of my favorite Christmas gifts came from my mother-in-law who gave me a crock-pot. i've been testing it out on a few different recipes but none have been note worthy...until now! for any one who uses a crock-pot, i found a great (easy, tastes good & cheap) recipe that we love!

Potato & Double Corn Chowder

1 bag (16oz) frozen hash brown potatoes, thawed (4 cups)
1 can (15 1/4 oz) whole kernel corn, undrained
1 can (14 3/4 oz) cream-style corn
1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
8 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon pepper

1. mix all ingredients in 3 1/2 -to- 6 quart slow cooker
2. Cover & cook on low hat setting 6-8 hours (or high setting 3-4 hours) to develop flavors

Adia Notes:
- so easy to double & freeze
- to make this dish vegetarian, like we do, use Bacon Bits instead of real bacon
- the recipe says to cook for 6-8 hours but i found i liked the consistency after only 4-5 hours rather then the full 6-8 hours.
- if you don't have a crock-pot you could probably do the same thing in a stew-pot on low heat

Friday, February 15, 2008

BREAKING NEWS!!

Mayden went pee pee on the potty twice this morning!! this could be the start of something wonderful! so far my game plan is to just keep her naked from the waste down when we're home and see what happens. any tips from veterans would be most welcome.

p.s. i'm begining to feel like nobody (expect you Linda) reads this blog... sad.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

love, love, love

yesterday was wonderful! one of the best valentines days yet. we all spent the entire day together which doesn't always happen so that was nice. May and hubby surprised me with red tulips which are spreading their fragrance around the room as i type....mmmm spring! we went to Barns and Nobles after Cam's nap. we love hanging out there with the kids (and of course whenever we can get away on our own) but it's a nice place to be an adult for a little bit yet still have the kids with us. we take turns staying in the children’s section while the other one goes off to adult land. we each had $10 to spend on the other one as our V-day gifts. we do this occasionally and it's really fun to see what we get each other. then after the kids went to bed Chris and I spent the night drinking beer and watching LOST and Celebrity Rehab....glamorous i know!



here are some pictures from Valentines day. Cameron's shirt says: My Heart Belongs to Mommy....i love it! :o)






LOST reaction: OMG!!!!!!!!! BEN?!?!?!?! what the heck is going on!!!???

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

happy thought of the day:

this time next year (god willing) i will be changing only one kids diaper all day long!! woooo hoooo this can't come soon enough.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

veggie-licious

this is how we eat Mac & Cheese:
yes it's from a box, but i load it with (previously frozen) chopped spinach... so in my mind that makes up for it. this is how we always eat it so May doesn't think twice about it. she is so adamant about not eating veggies (which really bugs me) but this is one way i get her!!!!!




and this is May drinking her 'Milkshake' which consists of about 1/4 cup of prune juice, 1 cup of organic 1% cow milk and 1 cup of soy milk....yum!

Monday, February 11, 2008

fit fest

May-May's swim class is great and i think i may have come across a goldmine with this community college. they have a fitness center that anyone can join for a very reasonable rate. so i did it. i took the money that i made watching Cole last week and i signed up. i've decided that i am very tired of this extra 20lbs. there are so many good reasons to do this now. general health/staying alive is my top reason and i don't want to be an inactive mom. i feel like i'm on the verge of letting myself go (to the dark side) but i'm still close enough to the edge where i can pull myself together again....so i'm going to try.



today was my first day but my plan is to go everyday (that way when i inevitably can't make it a few days a week it will still be okay). i figure it takes about 5 min to drive there, 30 min to exercise, 15 min to shower, and another 5 min to drive home. so i'm looking at an hour a day to myself (which believe me i'm going to cherish). im starting off slow, with a brisk walk but i hope to work my way up to running in the next few weeks. wish me luck!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

a gem


am i wrong here or is this one of the funniest (read: scariest) kid pictures you've ever seen?!? if i'm not mistaken this is baby Chris with none other than "Wendy" from Wendy's fast food chain....woah! your instinct is right....run baby Chris, run!

i'm in the middle of scanning a bunch of pictures from Chris's childhood. it's something that's been on the "to do" list since September. i'm tired of looking at this box in our livingroom so i'm working fast so they can go back to the in-laws. it will feel so good to get this job out of the way.

there are some really cute, and really funny pictures in these albums. i wish i could post them all.

Monday, February 4, 2008

January 2008 pictures

new pictures from January... the cream of the crop are posted. you can find the link to the right of this entry.

one thing i'm doing right: Cameron (2nd child) cannot make the typical claim that we take less pictures of him then Mayden. i take many more pictures of him then May-May these days. she doesn't seem to be changing as much as he is. she's cute, but he's cute and does new things!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

the white man doesn't cut it anymore

so super Tuesday is tomorrow. i hate how they do these primaries. why can't everyone vote on the same day like the general election? ugh! anyway i'm still unsure about who i'm going to vote for. to be honest i'll be proud to vote for either Hillary or Barack in November. so i see it as a win/win situation. i think i like Barack better but it probably shouldn't be a popularity contest. Hillary does have more experience but 24+ years of either a Bush or Clinton in the white house doesn't sound like democracy to me.

sometimes i feel like our country is so far off track that we'll never get it right. with poverty, the deteriorating environment, homelessness, gun violence, our current foreign policy... it's depressing. i almost pity the next president.

are you ready for some football?

i love football. i love it more when the team i love wins. the Eagles usually get much further in the season before they inevitably disappoint us. this year we didn't even make it to the playoffs. sad. but we still love them.

i hate it when the season ends, Sundays will be so boring now. i have such fond memories of watching football on lazy Sunday afternoons after church and dozing off now and then. of course this was all before kids came along.... oh how i miss those days!

go giants!





Saturday, February 2, 2008

two front teeth!

after months of waiting Cameron Jude Speer finally has teeth!!! i feel like such a dope for predicting that his teeth would be thru when he was 4 months old... welp 3.5 months later they are here! his two little bottom front ones popped thru yesterday. one is slightly more thru then the other one and they are just the cutest little teeth you have ever seen :o)

at 7 months old Mayden already had 4 teeth fully in. she got her first when she was 5 months old. she was a weird baby, Cam however is on the road to being totally normal (dispite his parents).




here are a few videos of Camo from yesterday. gosh i love this kid!

video

video

Friday, February 1, 2008

ahhhh the sweet smell of LOST

LOST was fantastic! some questions answered but of course more questions to replace those answered ones. i am very much digging the flashforwards, nice twist. this season really seems like it's taking off in a new direction. the pieces of the puzzle are finally coming together! i've been listening to the new Jay & Jack podcast a little bit throughout the day but still haven't finished.

everyone pray that the writers strike ends soon so we can have more then 8 episodes this season. oh man the thought of a mini season makes me so sad, especially after waiting this long for the show to come back. pay the damn writers!!