Monday, December 29, 2008

New York, New York, It's a Wonderful Town!

On Christmas Day we jumped on a plane and headed to NYC. OK, we headed to New Jersey, actually, but we had a fabulous view of Manhatten from our hotel room. The purpose of our visit was to see my Grandmother, the girls Great-Grandmother Gladys Claire, whom Hadleigh Claire is named after.
I must admit our last big trip/vacation to Asheville was a bit of a nightmare, so I was not sure how this MAJOR trip was going to go. But it was more important for us to see Grandma, so we made the plans. Apparently I come by my planning/organizational abilities honestly because from the time we mentioned the trip to Grandma, we had weekly conferences to plan out every detail.
We left on Christmas Day and arrived in time for a wonderful lunch at Grandma's with all my favorite food. My grandmother lives in an awesome apartment that has an incredible view of the Hudson River, the George Washington Bridge, and upper Manhatten. After the girls napped we jumped into Grandma's car and drove to the hotel which was a great find, thanks to my Aunt Kathy. We also had a magnificent view of the city and our rooms even had a kitchen! There were tons of shops and restaurants within walking distance and even a little park, so it was a great place to stay.(the view from our hotel room)

On Friday we met up with Grandma for lunch and then went to Aunt Kathy and Uncle Alan's for a real Hanukah dinner...yummy! Brisket, latkes, oooh yum! It was so fun to visit my family and to have the girls spend some time with them. Annelise LOVED Aunt Kathy, and Hadleigh is still talking about Great-Grandma Gladys Claire.

(Annelise and Aunt Kathy)

Saturday we drove into the city and visited the American Museum of Natural History. This is my fav museum. I remember going there as a child, and it was still as amazing. The museum is 4 city blocks long! Hadleigh LOVED every minute that we spent there, and asked me today about going to the museum again. Grandma, of course, is sure this a sign that she will be a great scholar.

(Dave and the girls in front of a dinosaur in the AMNH)

Sunday was a very special treat, Grandma, AUnt Kathy and I went into the city for brunch at Tavern on the Green. I haven't been there in years. In fact the last time I was there was winter time and we walked from Great-Grandma Pigeon's apartment on Central Park West to TOG. I remember holding Grandma Gladys' hand and Dad holding Grandma Pigeon's hand. I think I was 10. We ate in the Crystal Room, which is the best room, and had a marvelous time. It was so much fun and I just love my aunt and grandma. They are so hilarious and full of life, and very encouraging...of course I am the only niece/grand daughter, so everything I have ever done has always been perfect.

It really was a fabulous trip and I look forward to going back.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Glide-Crawford Christmas 1996 Revisited

This picture is some of the RA's during a hair-dying party: Elaine (Basement), Jenny (3rd Crawford), Patty (2nd Glide), Cara (3rd Front), Ami (1st Glide), Anne (2nd Front)
Help us all, but when we moved into our new house my mom sent me everything that I left at home. This consisted of trophies from Bobby Sox (I was quite the athlete), coke cans from Israel and Albania and other randmo souvenirs from travels, as well as mounds and MOUNDS of paper. All my journals, all the notes I took in college from PSYC 100...HELP to notes about my crush in high school...SO embarassing.

Over the past couple of months I have been sifting through the mounds, recycling them, of course, and choosing what to save. It has been interesting to thing that has been an odd thing to read about is boys...what I thought of them, and what they thought of me...I sure had a lot of letter from them...weird.

Anyway, I stumbled upon this little poem that was written by the 1996-97 Resident Assistants of Glide-Crawford. I was an RA for my junior and senior year of college. Every year the RAs plan a Christmas party for the residence hall. In 1996 we apparently read this little in honor of Koby, Marcy, Elaine, Patty, Ashleigh, Anne, Cara, Kate, Fran, and Jenny, and all the resident of Glide-Crawford:

'Twas the night before finals
When all through G-C
Not a woman was sleeping
Except for Koby

All the lights were hung
In 2nd Crawford with care
In hopes that the fire marshall
Would not come there
The books on 3rd Crawford
Were strewn on the beds
While visions of A's
Danced in their heads

Ear plugs for Ashleigh
Pink pj's on Kate
These RA's are sure
Looking great

When up from the basement
There arose such a splatter
Not girl in Glide-Crawford
Could relieve her bladder

Then up on 2nd Front
What should you hear
The drilling- you know
Those cable guys are near

And where on the building
Will you find lots of blue
Take a trip to 3rd Front
And visit Cara too

Up on 2nd Glide
Patty's Angels were crammin'
But down on 1st
The Divas (that was my hall) were jammin'

When finals are done
We'll all be so glad
Merry Christmas to all
From the Glide-Crawford Staff

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Almost Done...and Crazy Sick

As I type Dave is putting up new drywall in our living room. He is such a crazy dude! We had actually planned that he would spend all day Saturday, this Saturday tearing down the old drywall. Obviously from the pictures you can see that he got antsy. He tore down the drywall last Friday, and was able to get it all off the wall in about 3 hours. It was a lot easier than he thought because the drywall was glued to the wall, as opposed to nailed...hmm... He had all the new insulation put up last Sunday, and is now finishing the drywall. We are actually going to hire someone else to mud, and hope to have that finished and everything painted by January 1. Yay! I also have several other painting projects I want to work on in the coming 2 weeks, we will see how far we get.

Other than the crazy projects, we have had some other crazy happenings this week. We have been sick. First our computer caught a virus last Saturday, what a pain! I spent all day on Monday on the phone with Microsoft working to get rid of the thing. Thank goodness for people who know a lot more than I do about computers and viruses.

Second, on Tuesday night at 6.30 after we had put the girls to bed, Hadleigh started to vomit. Booo! Neither of my girls are real sickies, so I haven't ever really had to deal with this aspect of being a Mama until this week. Hadleigh has only puked 2 other times. Once earlier this year, which was odd because she never had a fever, she just randomly puked 3 different times all during naps or in the middle of the night. The other time was actually just a couple weeks ago over Thanksgiving. That time Dave was sleeping in the same room with her (I was in the other room with Annelise), so he dealt with the issue, and taught her to "cough" in the bowl.

So, anyway, since this was a work day and it did not seem to be a one time puke, we decided that I would sleep in her room with her. Dave pulled the mattress out of her crib and she slept on that mattress on the floor and I slept on her mattress, which was also on the floor. Dave actually slept with her from 8-10 so I could watch the finale of the Biggest Loser. So, she puked about every 15 minutes ALL night long! Horrible, it was SO pitiful.

Dave came in at 5.30 and took her so that I could get 45 minutes sleep before he left for work. Ugh! Before he left he put HC back down for a "nap" and I got Annelise up and was playing with her. At about 7.15 I hear HC crying and was terrified that she had puked again...but no. Dave had forgotten to put a diaper back on HC (she is potty trained, but not when she sleeps) she had pooped, and you know it was a sick poop. I was SO mad as I cleaned up the huge mess everywhere. HC came back downstairs and laid down on the couch watching her new favorite "Marshall Penny" you may call the movie Mary Poppins (which is a good movie to watch while sick because when I gave her medicine, we sang the song..."just a spoon full of sugar helps the medicine go down").

I won't go into all the other drama that happened that morning, but at 8 I got on the phone with someone and they were NOT helpful with information, so I was a bit distracted when at 8.30 HC asked to go back up and take another nap. I put her back down and continued talking to sacks of crap Barnes and Noble. About 20 minutes later (when I had ended my conv) I heard her crying again, so I went back up, and guess what. I, myself, had forgotten to put a diaper on HC, and YES, she had pooped again. Good LORD, help me! This is the point in the morning when I burst into tears. Sobbing as I cleaned up the mess I wondered how anyone ever let me become a mother. I also began thinking I cannot make it through this day, I need to call someone to help me...but I couldn't come up with it was me against the world. I managed to pull myself together, get all my crazy Christmas packages mailed...and OH yeah, make a Hanukah dinner for my Community Group that wasn't a complete dinner, since I burned to a crisp the chopped chicken liver, and did not have time to make latkes, but it all worked out...thanks to the Howes who came over early and vaccumed my family room, sliced bread, etc.

Last night Hadleigh's fever got worse, and she woke up about every hour or more until about 2am. She was having horrible dreams and wanted me to sing to her. I am exhausted, but today was a much better day. I just sat on the couch with her (and did not clean one thing or cook one thing) and we watched Marshall Penny over and over. Her fever finally broke early this afternoon, so I think we are on the road to recovery. Annelise seems to have a slight fever, but no puking...I am hoping to dodge that bullet.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Playgroup and Macy's Pink Pig

Yesterday our playgroup met at Lenox for our annual ride on the Pink Pig. The Pink Pig, which is basically a train ride, has been an Atlanta Christmas tradition since the 1950's. Most of my playgroup friends who are from Atlanta rode the Pig when they were children. Last year Hadleigh had to ride the Pig with her little friends and their mommies because they would not let me and Annelise on the the ride without her carset (you can tell from the above picture that they have gone all out to ensure the safety restraints are top notch). This year was my first ever ride on the Pig and it was everything I could have asked for and more!
Hadleigh rode by herself, and did a wonderful job. Our group even got free tickets because the register was broken and we had to wait a while...bring it on! Here we have HC playing with her buddies on one of those mall video things. She loves all the boys in our group (there is only one other girl and she wasn't able to come). Our grou pis actually about to double in size because many of the gals are prego with #2, but even with the doubling it looks like we are only going to gain one more girl. Ah well, as you can see from the pics Hadleigh can hold her own and run with the best of them. The picture below has Brennan, Jacob, Andrew, Connor, HC and Evan.

Here is HC with Connor, one of her fav buddies. They ran around and played in the plants as we waited for all the other moms to get there. They were SO cute together!

I love my playgroup and am so thankful to be around the other gals in the group. It is especially fun to see HC grow to love these other kiddos.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Miss Hadleigh Claire is 33 Months

Here she is, my big girl. She is looking so much like a little girl and not so much like a baby/toddler. Amazing. I suppose this happens as you near 3 years old! Here are a couple things I bet you never knew about the little miss...she likes shoes and jackets. As you can see from the pictures she is in her jackets. She has several different jackets or sweaters and she enjoys wearing them, even during her nap...and she likes them zipped up all the way, and even will walk around the house with her hood on. She also now insists on wearing her shoes as soon as she gets up in the morning and after her nap. Slippers will not do, they must be her pink shoes or her brown shoes.
She has been such a joy this month. We have had few discipline issues, and things have just settled into a bit of a routine, with everyone understanding expectations and consequences. I am sure that will change in an hour, but it is nice for the moment.

Here is a new one, she loves to run! I wondered if the little miss would ever go faster than a stride, but she is beginning to pick up on the whole running thing and seems to enjoy it. Sunday evening she ran home from our neighborhood Christmas party. Dave and I just laughed the whole time because it was SO cute.
I can tell HC what we are doing tomorrow and she gets really excited about it. This is a fairly new ability in the last couple of months, and I love being able to tell her about things to look forward to, like we are going to see Grandma and Grandpa, or we are going to see Great Grandma Gladys Claire, or we are going to playgroup or school.

She is still very attached to her friends, and LOVES to play with them. If it has been a while since she has seen them she will ask to play with friends. I think Annelise is beginning to meet some of HC's social needs. They are starting to play really well together and it is fun to watch. I keep telling HC that God gave her Annelise, and they need to stick together and take care of one another. It is fun to hear HC talk about sticking together. This morning when I took Annelise up for her nap, HC begged me to let Annelise play instead of nap. This is a common occurrence which always makes me smile.
I think that is about all I have to report for the big girl. Oh, one more thing...HC is going potty all by herself. I do not even go in the bathroom with her. Heaven!

Update on the Projects

So here, we are, half-way through the living room project. The picture above is the old paint with the varnished wood trim. This is what our entire house looked like before we moved in. I think I have mentioned this before, but we were trying to avoid painting the trim, but the green just looked horrible against the no choice! Below is the trim painted and the wall painted. Doesn't it look fab?
In the last picture you can see the wall to the left and the wall straight on are finished. The wall to the right is going to be ripped out and we will reinsulate and put up new drywall over Christmas. I think it will be easier to paint the trim with it in my hand, but we will see.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Riddle Me This

Last week, my buddy, Sar, told me about a shirt at Old Navy that I HAD to buy for Annelise. Isn't it great? So yesterday I went online and found it for $7.50. I decided I would just run into the store and pick it up so that I could avoid shipping. So, this morning I ran over to Old Navy, walked in and after some major searching (I think the ON near me is a bit ghetto) found the shirt, but not in the right size. Above the shirt it was listed as 2 for $12...ok, that works. I picked up the wrong size anyway, because I just wanted the shirt, and walked up to checkout. The cashier asked me if I wanted to get 2 for $12 and I said no, she then proceeded to ring up the shirt and my total was $11.24. What?
I said, "Uh-no, I thought this shirt was $7.50."
She said, "No, it is $10.50" and showed me the price tag.
I said, "It is listed as $7.50 online."
She said, "They have different prices online."
I said, "So, I can get 1 shirt for $11.24, and I can get 2 for $12?"
She started at me...and I said, "No thanks" and left.
LAME. So, the good news, I suppose, is now the price online is $6.00, and I can buy the right size...probably worth it all...but weird Old Navy...weird!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

8 Things

I was tagged by Margaret, my college buddy several weeks, here are my answers FINALLY.

8 TV shows I love to watch
I don't watch much TV, but here goes
1. Survivor
2. Biggest Loser
3. Extreme Home Makeover
4. Top Chef
5. What Not to Wear
6. Anne of Green Gables (it was a mini-series people)
7. Law and Order
8. Without a Trace

8 Favorite Restaurants
1. Asam House
2. The Haven
3. Rose Mexicano (yummy guac)
4. Athens (Greek Restaurant in Thallichtenberg, Germany)
5. Burg Lichtenberg Restaurant
6. Grace 1720
7. Dish (but I think it went out of business)
8. I can't think of the name, but that little Italian Restaurant in the Highlands across from Murphy's.

8 Things that Happened Today (I'll do yesterday since it is 6 and nothing much has happened)
1. Baked one of my pumpkins
2. Made cookie dough
3. Voted, and btw won!
4. Looked for a shower curtain
5. Played with the girls
6. Ate some leftovers
7. Tried to call BFF, Erica
8. Thought about painting, but did not touch it.

8 Things I Look Forward To
1. Having the living room project finished.
2. Hanging out with peeps from my neighborhood
3. CO with my fam next summer
4. Visiting my grandmother in NYC
5. Christmas
6. Going away with Dave...sometime
7. Fridays, because Dave is home
8. January holds some promise for fun visits with old friends

8 Things On My Wish List
1. Going away with Dave
2. Traveling back to Europe with the girls...or without
3. My own business
4. A screened in porch
5. Shopping spree at Ann Taylor
6. A maid
7. A personal paper filer
8. Furniture/ a couch to sit on while watching TV

8 People I Have Tagged, please feel no obligation.
1. Sar
2. Lisa
3. Allison
4. Julie
5. Karina
6. Jan
7. Christy
8. Missy

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

The Elf is 13 Months

Here is my sweet Annelise leaning into Hadleigh to give her a hug. She is such a sweet, sweet, cuddler and I love it! She loves to give hugs and kisses and lots of cuddles. This morning I walked downstairs to find Annelise giving Dave a 4 minute cuddle, he was in heaven. This is my sweet 13 month old. She just seems to love everyone, with big squeals whenever Hadleigh or Dada walk into the room, or I suppose even if I walk into the room. It is fun to see her begin to prefer Dave which seems a long time coming. Last night she woke up in the middle of the night (her night, it was only 9.30pm), and I went up to check on her and change her diaper. In the middle of the situation Dave came home and was surprised to find her up (she NEVER wakes up). Annelise immediately wanted Dave, and so he was able to cuddle her and put her to sleep.

She is a funny girl and loves to laugh. She likes peek-a-boo and just also tickles. It is fun to get her going. She is cruising around, still, and shows no real interest in walking without help from a walker or a hand. I keep thinking she is close, but I might just be setting myself up since HC didn't walk until 17 months. We will see! With crawling she is into EVERYTHING...this is a new experience for me, because HC was fairly compliant, and never interested in climbing/getting into things. We have had to put a permanent gate up blocking the stairs because distraction does not work! And this child climbs on everything...ugh! And she touches everything...ugh! She turns off the computer regularly. You would think that I w ould learn, but she is super quick and goes in for the kill when you are least expecting it!

Have I mentioned Annelise is a picky eater? It is frustrating. I think part of the frustration is I cannot reason with her yet, as in, eat 2 more bites and you can get a treat (raisen, applesauce, yogurt), she just refuses things and begins to throw is maddening. I have had to learn to walk away from
She still only has her 8 teeth, so she is a bit behind dentally...funny since she got her first teeth at 4 months! She loves to babble and regularly uses Mama and Dada. Her other words seem to be undiscernable.
Sleeping has never been her gift, so we still struggle with her naps, though she sleeps through the night like a champ, and generally is still getting up at 5.30a, which is only painful on the weekend.

She is beginning to play really well by herself which is SO freeing, and Annelise and Hadleigh have been playing well together, which is such a blessing. I do not really remember this age with Hadleigh because when Hadleigh was this age I was prego and puking and just not really into anything that was going on at the time, so it is fun to really have a chance to enjoy this age.
Here she is with the walker/stroller that Grandma and Grandpa gave her for her birthday. She only gets to play with it when Hadleigh is not around, but she does enjoy the limited time she has with the toy.
I guess that is all I have to report for Annelise this month.


We had a great Thanksgiving! Thursday morning we jumped on the road (which was empty...thanks to everyone who left on Wednesday!) and headed up to Knoxvegas. The girls enjoyed watching "The Muppet Movie" and "Charlotte's Web" while we traveled. I love having a DVD player in the van! We made great time and arrived in plenty of time for the big meal.
My fav McNay Thanksgiving treat is homemade egg noodles...they are heaven in my mouth! Hadleigh enjoyed her first Thanksgiving meal. This was the first year that she did not nap through it.
Aunt Angie and the cousins all came over later in the day. Annelise crawled around attaching herself to everyone, while Hadleigh stuck close to Dave and I...she is shy, or at least puts on a good shy-show.
Friday we went to The Fantasy of Trees, which is a fundraiser for Children's Hopsital. There were hundreds of decorated trees, a carousel, little crafts for the kids, a sing-along (with some very bad singers...yikes), and Santa. We had a wonderful time with the girls. We did a couple of crafts, rode the carousel, looked at tons of trees.

Dave got in some fishing with buddies on Friday afternoon and Saturday, while the girls got in some good Grandma and Grandpa time. Dave and I even got out a couple of the nights alone. We saw the movie Australia, which was super fun. I am trying to think about the last movie I saw in the's been since July.

All in all, it was a wonderful holiday.