This is my site where I will be sharing my thoughts, feelings and happenings. In the words of Austin Powers, "It's my happening, baby, and it freaks me out...yeah!" Enjoy!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Tulsa Ice Storm

We are in Tulsa, Oklahoma right now for the holidays and the week before we arrived there was a crazy ice storm in Tulsa. Many thousands of people were without electricity for at least several days. Dozens of utility trucks drove in from nearby states to help work around the clock to get the power restored to homes and businesses. And many tree-trimming businesses came from other states to help trim trees and remove broken branches. My parents were without power all was restored 2 days before we arrived.

(You can click on each picture below for a closer look)

My uncle Don took these pictures of the ice covered trees:

The trees were so covered in thick ice that many broke apart like this (even the really big trunks!):

Most homes had large piles of branches like this out front all week waiting for the yard waste removal trucks to come by and take them:

Monday, December 10, 2007

October Visitors

My long time friend Sheryl and her husband Daniel came to visit us from Seattle at the beginning of October. We went to the beach twice (St George Island and Shell Point Beach) and Alisa wore her swimsuit and enjoyed the water for the first time.

Our spot at St George Island (10-04-07):

Eating at The Blue Parrot on St George Island:

At Shell Point Beach (10-06-07):

My Mom, Dad and brother Greg visited in the middle of October. We went to Maclay Gardens, Shell Point Beach and then Jacksonville Beach for the first time.

Relaxing at the park at Maclay Gardens (10-14-07):

Walking around the gardens:

This tree has branches that grew down to the ground and even started going under the ground in a few places:

St George Island is our favorite beach so far (1 hour and 50 minutes away). It's always been quite empty when we've gone and the sand and small waves are nice. It has good bathrooms and a shower to rinse off all the salt and sand. There are also several restaurants nearby (with one right on the beach).

Shell Point Beach is the closest (45 minutes away), but doesn't really have waves to enjoy. It does have hermit crabs to watch at low tide and shells to scavenge (which makes the sand not so soft and feet friendly). There are no restaurants nearby.

Our spot at Shell Point Beach (10-16-07):

Jacksonville Beach was stinky because of the seaweed that had washed ashore on the day we went. I'm not sure if it's normally like that. If so, then it's not worth the 3 hour drive for us. I think you had to pay to go out on the pier. The sand was nice though and there were lots of shops and restaurants nearby.

Our spot at Jacksonville Beach (10-17-07):


Friday, December 07, 2007

Shocked at Wal-Mart

I was shocked when checking out at Wal-Mart today. I was charged 1 cent for 4 bananas. That's 1 cent TOTAL, not per banana! So funny! I always just buy about 4 bananas and I don't remember being charged so little before.

I was doing the self checkout and when I scanned the Wite-Out, the machine said to please wait for assistance because approval was needed. I was shocked and thought approval was only needed for alcoholic beverages and stuff like that. Guess too many teens have been sniffing Wite-Out...the lady said you have to be 18 to buy it--wow!

Alisa is 8 Months Old Today

Alisa had more new solids this month (squash, green beans, peas, mango, pears) and she likes them all. She gets excited when it's time to eat spoon foods. I prepare them in batches by pureeing them with water in the Magic Bullet (like a small blender) that a friend recommended and then freezing them in serving size portions using ice cube trays with plastic wrap over them. Once the portions are frozen, I put them in labeled Ziplock freezer bags. Before bed, I put the portions that she will eat the next day in baby bowls with lids and they are thawed by the next morning. I just mix some cereal for her right before feeding her and the meal is complete. That Cube Food Method is described in the book "Super Baby Food" by Ruth Yaron. The book has so much information on how to prepare your own baby food, what foods can safely be introduced at what ages, recipes, and so much more. I highly recommend it.

Eating sweet potatoes (for first time) and rice cereal (11-03-07):

We got her a highchair and she looks so small sitting in it:

Wearing bib from Grandmom on Thanksgiving:

Alisa gained just over 1 lb this month--she went from 17 lbs 13 oz to 19 lbs. Her hair is noticeably longer and her 2 bottom middle teeth are emerging. She wiggled all the way out of her Bumbo chair for the first time in just a few seconds a couple of days ago. She also started making a new funny noise this week that sounds like a long drawn out heeeeee sound or like she's gasping for air. She thinks it's hilarious (and so do we), especially when she really draws it out. Silly girl!

We had to put the baby gate up by the living room because Alisa is so mobile and we don't want her falling down the stairs. We originally bought the gate for Minga when she was a puppy and slept in the kitchen in our apartment (we hadn't used it at this house until now). Alisa is a fast and excellent crawler and she can quickly pull herself up using whatever is around (Bumbo chair, door, coffee table, ottoman, our legs, stool, chair, baby gate).

She loves standing, climbing over things (Minga, our legs, Bumbo chair) and looking at pictures of babies (she talks to the baby pictured on the big diaper box).

Minga is very good about letting Alisa climb over her. It's funny because sometimes Minga will look at us like "Do I have to take this right now? I'm tired!" However, she knows if Alisa is really bothering her she can just get up and walk away.

Alisa spends lots of time talking to and touching the pictures of the babies on the diaper box and the boxes her large toys were packaged in:

She sleeps 11 hours (instead of 12 hours) each night and started taking longer naps (1 hour to 2 1/2 hours). We lowered her crib mattress since she stands up frequently after napping and a few times was trying to get out of the crib (yikes!). These pictures were before we lowered the crib:

She pulled books off the bookshelves in the office for the first time 2 weeks ago (she tried before that but didn't actually pull any off). I was impressed that instead of ripping or slobbering on the book, she just flipped the pages over and over with her thumb:

Choosing next book to pull off:

We also got her an Exersaucer this month. I meant to buy one sooner but wanted to find the right one and I was just so busy with work and Alisa that it took me awhile to get around to it. We chose one that will last a long time--it can be transformed into a play table once she's walking and too tall to use it as an Exersaucer.

She says da-da all the time and occasionally says da-dee. It is super cute!

Good times with Daddy:

Sitting in toy bin (11-08-07):

Choosing toy from toy bin (11-26-07):

The Pillsbury Doughboy is a new toy that I dug out of a box (got him free when I ordered a cookbook many years ago) and Alisa loved him immediately:

See the resemblance? (11-16-07):

Alisa shares Tigger with Minga (11-07-07):

She is always going after the jingly tag on Minga's collar (11-14-07):

Sometimes she plays with Minga's ear and tries to suck on them (11-26-07):