Monday, October 27, 2008

Annie hits the town!

Caroline dressed up like Sleeping Beauty for last weekend's Fall Festival, but this past weekend we spent the day in New Orleans on Saturday and she dressed up like her favorite orphan:  Annie!  

We curled her hair just for the occasion and the results were pretty amusing.  She actually like having the curlers in her hair, but I think it is because she thought they made her more like Annie.  We left Baton Rouge in the morning and drove to New Orleans and parked uptown to ride the St. Charles Avenue Street Car.  It was Caroline's first ride on the street car and she had a blast.  We rode almost up to Lee Circle and got off and came back to our car before hitting the zoo.  She enjoyed seeing the animals, and in true Caroline fashion once she saw the animal, she was ready to get moving to the next one.  

We all had a great time and the weather couldn't have been any better.  After the zoo we ate a late lunch at Louisiana Pizza Kitchen.  As we got on the road, Caroline was NOT happy at the prospect of going home, she whined about that for about three minutes and when she got quiet, we looked in the back seat and she was fast asleep.  

It was a long day of a lot of walking for those little legs of hers, so I'm sure she needed that car nap!  Here are some pictures from the day:  

Our little "Annie" before we left the house!  

Riding the street car (yes, with her curlers, she did not want to take them out for the ride)

Waiting for the street car for the return trip back uptown

"Annie" and Jeffrey before we went into the zoo (and we finally convinced her that Annie didn't wear curlers, she needed to take them OUT to have curly hair)

Checking out the sea lions

Taking a little break

Climbing the tree with a little help from Jeff

On our way out . .  it's a lot of walking for short three year old legs

Burning off some energy at Louisiana Pizza Kitchen before the drive back to BR

Fall Festival

The church set up a booth at a Fall Festival in the neighborhood right near the church last weekend and Jeff was the de facto point person on that.  Caroline and I went out there to join him Saturday evening and we had a good time.  Caroline dressed up like Sleeping Beauty, as you'll see below, and had a great time helping Jeff with Pumpkin Bowling set up.  She probably had more fun doing that than playing any of the other games that were out there, but then again, Caroline is truly our "little helper" with just about everything we do, so that should come as no surprise.  Here are some pictures from the day!  

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Baby news and Caroline updates

We are now about five weeks away from the day that Caroline's baby sister will join us! My doctor told me at the appointment yesterday to expect to have her right around Thanksgiving/the first week of December. That really makes her arrival seem imminent - in an exciting way! She weighs about 4 1/2 lbs now and my ribs can attest that she is doing her fair share of kicking around in there. Here's a picture of her profile from the ultrasound yesterday.
In other news, Caroline is just as excited as we are about her sister's arrival and in fact I'm beginning to get a little worried about Caroline's possessive tendencies when we talk about the baby. She told me this today: "when my baby sister gets her, I will rock her and shut the door and you not come in." Um, no. But, I didn't burst her bubble, I just said, "Really?"
I'll also share a couple of funny non-baby related Caroline stories. The other morning I was about to blow dry my hair when she called me into her room. I had the blow dryer in my hand and she asked me what it was. I knew she knew what it was so I said, "Caroline, what is this?" she mimicked me using the blow dryer and responded, "It's for burning your hair, like this." Note to self: let hair air dry more often.
On our way home from school we always pass right in front of the Shaw Center for the Arts. As we were driving that way the other day, a car in front of us stopped and a young woman in a wedding gown and veil got out, presumably to take some wedding pictures there. Caroline's face lit up and she pointed to the bride and said, "Mama, where is that princess going?" I love it. In her three year old world, it is nothing out of the ordinary for a princess to ride in a Ford Explorer.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Weekend Update

On Saturday we went over to the PMAC to the Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast. We got there at a great time; the line wasn't long at all and we enjoyed some great pancakes and sausage. When we left the line was very long and when I tried to re-enter the building after we'd already gone outside, the crowd waiting was a little testy. As I am prone to do, I realized I needed to go back in to use the restroom after we had already walked outside and when I tried to re-enter through the exit door it was locked, so with a nice smile and in a kind voice, I walked up to the people in line at the entrance door and said, "I'm not trying to break in line, I just need to get inside real quick." A very large man behind me was rude and obviously in a bad mood because he had to wait so long for his pancakes and he said, "Well, lady the line starts way back there, you can't just go in here." I wanted to say something rude, but I refrained and just said, "I know, I'm not getting in line to eat, I've already been inside." He didn't look any happier, but I went on in nonetheless.

Outside they had the LSU Fire Dept with their trucks, a fire rescue training house, and the big ladder truck. Caroline and Jeff rode the bucket on the end of the ladder truck up in the air a good 50-75 feet and Caroline wasn't scared in the least. After that she wanted to go up in the fire rescue house so she and Jeff waited in line for that. As we were waiting I realized that the firemen were belaying people out of the windows of the house from about three or four stories up. I thought for sure Caroline wouldn't want to do that, but I didn't say anything about it to her and neither did Jeff. When it got to be her turn, they fit her with a harness and she and Jeff went in and proceeded up the stairs. A few minutes later I saw my little girl's face peer out of the third story window and then she rappelled down the side of the building all by herself. No fear on her face whatsoever. She was quite proud of herself when she got down and Jeff and I made sure she knew we were proud of her bravery as well.  I only wish we had brought the camera, but honestly I didn't think there would be that much excitement at a pancake breakfast!  

One thing we've learned with her when it comes to trying new things from food to rappelling out of a building, if we don't make a big deal about it or put our pre-conceived ideas into her head, she can make up her own mind and more often than not isn't afraid to try something.

I hope each of you had a good weekend too!

How you feel eskimos?

After the LSU game last night I wasn't tired (which is highly unusual these days), so I decided to watch Saturday Night Live. The first few skits were pretty disappointingly NOT funny, but when Sarah Palin showed up on Weekend Update and Amy Pohler did the rap, I was cracking up all by myself in our living room. In case you missed it, or want to relive it, click on the link below, I couldn't get it to embed in the post for some reason. see below (I finally was able to get the video to embed):

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Oh. My. Goodness.

This blog is hysterical. I was indulging in a little non-work related web surfing this afternoon and I was literally laughing out loud in my office. I love to laugh and this made my day. Cake Wrecks is my new guilty pleasure website of choice!

I'm also really looking forward to watching Ace of Cakes tonight, so there is a cake theme in my life right now I guess. Maybe more of a baking theme. On Cake Wrecks they do have nice cakes every Sunday, but the vast majority are laugh-out-loud awful cakes. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


You Are Barbeque Sauce

You are a social person. You enjoy cooking for other people.

You are both skillful and competitive. You enjoy mastering hard tasks.

You appreciate complexity more than simplicity.

Your taste in food tends to lean toward interesting flavors.

You appreciate exotic spice combinations. You tend to like cutting edge, fusion cuisine.

You get along with all personalities from a distance. Except salsa personalities, who always seem to annoy you.

A little middle of the week fun for you! In fact, I love BBQ sauce and I'm interested to know what a "salsa" personality is like. If any of you take this short quiz, let me know if you're a "salsa". I promise it won't change our relationship.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Oh no they didn't

This is horrible (just to be totally a-political about this, it would be equally horrible had they named the child after the other ticket) and the implication I get from reading the article is that the father did this without telling or consulting the mother. That wouldn't go over well in our family. Yay for East Tennessee! I used to live there, so I mean that with much love.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Happy, happy, happy

Caroline is learning how to use a technique other than whining or crying to get what she wants. We've tried to be vigilant about not caving to the whining or crying and it has forced Caroline to get creative with her persuasive skills. A couple of favorite new phrases that she employs: "But, it would make me happy, happy, happy!" and conversely, "That will make me sad, sad, sad." If you say she can't do something (i.e., watch TV during the week or go outside to play when it's time for her bath), she will say, "But, it would make me happy, happy, happy." And then when we reply, "No, Caroline it is a school night and we don't watch TV on school nights (or it is time for your bath, or you have to eat dinner before you can have a popsicle)." She responds with, "That makes me sad, sad, sad."

Another new technique is an off-shoot of her discovery of "ideas" (see this post). If we tell her that she needs to do something or offer her an alternative to one of her "ideas" (i.e, cookies for breakfast), she'll say, "That's not a great idea" in a very pouty voice with downcast eyes.

I think it is good for kids to learn how to express anger without hitting or yelling, because we all get angry and I know life must be very frustrating to a three year old a lot of the time. Caroline has learned to express her anger with the following sound: "Mmmmmuh." Imagine the sound you make when food tastes very good ("Mmmm"), but instaed of a tone of pleasure, that sound is angry and gruff and that is Caroline's vocalization for anger. She asked me the other day, "Mama, how do you pout?" I stuck my lower lip out and gave her some sad eyes. She replied by saying, "This is how I pout" and proceeded to put her head down and made her "Mmmmuh" noise.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Caroline's 3 year check up

This morning I took Caroline in for her flu shot and her three year check up. First of all, she is such a trooper about shots! As my mom can attest, she does not get that from me! When I was little, I would hide under the table to avoid shots, I would scream and cry at the thought of a shot. I don't know how old I was before I realized that shots really don't hurt that badly (perhaps 21, 22?). Caroline just said "Oww!" when she got the shot and then she was so excited about getting the band-aid and the fact that she was "getting big" because she doesn't cry when she gets a shot. She was so proud of the sticker she got, she never shed a tear.

She's hit all of the milestones that they ask about to be sure she's developmentally on track. She's 39 1/2 inches tall which puts her right above the 95th percentile in height and she weighs 33 lbs, which puts her at the 75th percentile for weights. All in all, our girl is growing and learning well! The only thing that we are continuing to monitor is Caroline's speech. She understands everything we say and most of the time Jeff and I can understand what she says, but often others cannot understand her. I know she's only 3, so I don't want to freak out about nothing, but I don't want something that can be easily addressed to go unchecked. So, we'll go back to see the speech therapist sometime in the next couple of months to evaluate.

We are looking forward to some nice weather (hopefully) for the weekend and a good night of wathcing the Tigers take on Florida Saturday night. Hope you have a good weekend!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Trust and politics and the boring debate

"6 Now I know that the LORD saves his anointed;
he answers him from his holy heaven
with the saving power of his right hand.

7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.

8 They are brought to their knees and fall,
but we rise up and stand firm.

9 O LORD, save the king!
Answer [a] us when we call!"

Psalm 20 came to mind for me after watching the debate last night. Fist of all, I thought it was boring and neither said anything new or enlightening or really impressed me much one way or the other. One of the long-standing conservative criticisms of liberals has been that liberals are constantly looking to the government to solve people's problems. I'm trying not to get to political here and I think those of you who know me know I'm conservative, but not a dyed in the wool Republican, but I agree with that criticism. Lately, however, I've noticed the same attitude being espoused by supposed conservatives and even more disturbingly, from the "Religous Right".  I am certainly a Christina, but I've never quite identified with that term. It seems like the extremes in both parties are looking to the government to solve our problems. Both think "If our guy just gets into office, then things will really get where we need them. Then we can really get government working the way it should." 

I guess what I find more disheartening about the RR taking on this attitude is that as Believers, our trust is not, or should not be in "horses and chariots", in our elected leaders, or even (gasp) in the United States of America. Our trust first and foremost is in God and all that He can accomplish. His provision. His control. That's not to say we shouldn't care who is elected or be involved in politics or anything like that. I enjoy politics and I vote and I care about this election, but it's not my religion and if "my guy" loses, God is in control. Both parties have lost sight of the fact that God can redeem anything (as I talked about here) and we are called to put our trust not in men, but in Him.

My study Bible had a great, very applicable note on the above verses and I'm going to quote them here: "As long as there have been armies and weapons, nations have boasted of their power, but such power does not last. Throughout history empires and kingdoms have risen to great power only to vanish in the dust. David, however, knew that the true might of the nation was not in weaponry, but in worship, not in firepower, but in God's power. Because God alone can preserve a nation or an individual, be sure you are confidence is in God who gives eternal victory." Life Application Bible p.921 (Notes for Psalm 20).

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

update on our girls

Yesterday I had a follow up appointment with the high-risk pregnancy doctors, which meant another ultrasound peek at our baby girl. All looks good; she weighs in at about 3 1/2 lbs now, which they tell me is a normal weight for a baby at this point. She was moving well and she passed all of her "activity tests". She's already moved to the "head down" position, so it's hard to get good pictures of her face at this point, but below is one of her yawning. I'll try to go ahead and decipher it: if you see the black oval-ish diamond-ish shape in the middle of the picture, that is her mouth (yawning) and directly to the right is her nose and then you can probably see her eyes. She reminds us of Caroline.  

Speaking of Caroline, she is doing well too!  She seems to have grown like a little weed in the past two months and is growing out of all of her clothes and shoes faster than we can keep up with.  She's not the oldest in her class at school, but she is certainly the tallest.  She has alsopicked up a couple of new phrases lately.  She now has "ideas".  She'll say, "I have an idea!"  And you reply, "what is it Caroline?"  To which she says, "My idea is . . . .. That's a great idea, right?"  And of course it's a great idea!  The other new phrase borders on being sassy, but it is pretty funny and from her tone, I don't think she means it sassy.  If I am getting aggravated with her or if I'm busy doing something and she is asking me a million questions, often I'll say something like, "Caroline, please give me a minute', or "You are going to have to wait".  In those sorts of situations, she has started saying, "Well mama, you might need to be nice."  And again, she's right, I do need to be nice!  

Caroline has also been quite interested in buses and trains lately and we've promised that we'll take her on a train ride soon.  Here's a picture of Caroline early one morning as she decided that she needed to wait on the porch for the bus that picks up a little boy who lives across the street.  

Hope all is well with all of you!  

Monday, October 06, 2008

Our weekend

This past Saturday was an election day in Baton Rouge, so early that morning Caroline drove her Jeep and I walked over to the church in our neighborhood so that I could vote.  She loved it and felt so proud that she had "driven" all the way there.  I had to work in the middle of the day, so Caroline and Jeff spent some time out in the kayak on the LSU lakes while I headed out to work.  They had a great time discovering turtles and trying to feed the ducks from the boat.  As aggressive as those ducks are on shore, Jeff said that they were terrified of the boat and weren't interested in eating any bread that Caroline had to offer while they were out on the water.  They spent a couple of hours out there and when they got home Jeff said Caroline was dirty and tired so she took a bath and went down for her nap without even wanting lunch first.  

When I got home in the afternoon, Caroline and I made a trip to Target while Jeff mowed the grass and got the back yard in order.  Caroline recently discovered Barbie dolls and we got her a princess Barbie with a gift card she had left over from her birthday.  I know in recent years Barbie has gotten a bad rap, but I loved Barbies, so it is fun for me to see her enjoying some of the same toys I loved to play with.  

On Sunday after church we had brunch with our pastor and his wife and it was 1:30 by the time we got home so we decided Caroline would forgo her nap for the day.  Instead of sleeping, we headed out to the LSU Rural Life Museum.  They were putting on Harvest Days this weekend.  Caroline had a great time.  I hadn't been there in years and Jeff had never been.  It is really like taking a step back in time.  They have actual houses that have been reclaimed and restored that are fully furnished as they would have been in the 1800's, along with slave cottages, a schoolhouse, a church, a blacksmith shop, a grist mill, a general store, and I'm sure some other buildings that I'm not recalling.  For the weekend, they had activities for kids set up and most of them were geared for kids a little older than Caroline, but she had fun with all of the activities she could take part in.  We took a horse drawn wagon ride around the property, she got to grind corn into corn meal, pet some goats, and play with a friend she made on the wagon ride.  Here are some pictures from our time there.   

On the wagon ride!  

Caroline with the goat

I'm not sure what this is called, but Caroline (with Jeff's help) used this machine to get all of the corn kernels off of a cob of corn before grinding the kernels into corn meal.  

Grinding the corn meal

Feeling the effects of a No Nap Day.