Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Photos from the beach (July 4th weekend)

Tim pointed out to me last night that I forgot to upload the photos from the beach half of our long weekend. I only shared the alligators. So here are the rest of the pictures. We went to Jekyll island and rented a lovely little condo that backed right up onto the beach.

Max spent most of the morning sprinting up and down the beach and swimming and Lily spent most of her day beachcombing for shells. We found tons of sand dollars and shells. Lily loved finding the big conch shells that were still occupied. She'd tickle the foot until it went back inside the shell. We found a few teeny crabs and little hermit crabs too.

Here they are building a sand castle

Tim also set up a hammock outside the back door - it was VERY relaxing!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Kindergarten - here we come!

My son's teacher-to-be phoned this afternoon to introduce herself. How nice is that?! Apparently she's been wanting to teach Kindergarten for a long time and is excited to finally get the grade she wants. What a bonus to have a teacher that is thrilled to be getting your child's class.

School starts in less than TWO WEEKS! The summer has flown by so fast. Tomorrow we'll be getting the final pieces of Max's uniform. He's been asking every week how many days are left until he starts school. It's starting to get very real - my baby is going to school!! Combine that with turning 30 last week and I'm starting to feel just a little bit old.

My eyes! My eyes!

Yesterday I was looking after a friend's daughter (said friend is a diet saboteur - 2 lots of cake in 2 days! but that's a different blog post). Not wanting to be in the house with three children under 6 for a whole day I decided to take them to the library. Pretty harmless, right? Wrong.

It all started to go south when we arrived with several other flustered moms dragging children along, rushing into the building at 10:29 only to discover that the 10:30 story time we were all trying to get to has finished for the summer. Whoops! Not to worry, we all pretended we knew that and were simply there for the books, not the puppet show.

After the children had picked out enough books and were starting to get a little loud, we got in the elevator ready to go. Only it stopped at the "grown-up floor" as it's referred to in our house. Fine, I needed a good book to read anyway. I was just giving up hope looking at the biography isle while trying to stop three kids from running away or yelling, disturbing the eery quiet when S (friend's daughter) stops, points and starts giggling uncontrollably. I poke my head around the corner to see what was so funny and well, I snorted. Loudly. In a library. We ducked back into the biography isle and I ashamed to say that, egged on by three small giggling children, I snapped a picture on my trusty Blackberry - thank goodness for the zoom function!

Some things are still as amusing when you're 30 as they are when you're 3.5............

*giggle* You'd have thought he'd have felt the breeze or something!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Oh the shame!

I love cooking, it's one of my favourite things to do. I'm not afraid of many recipes. Beef wellington? Bring it on! A roast dinner with all the fixings and gravy that will make you cry? In my sleep. The only recipe I just can't master is pancakes. I can make a decent crepe, but for some reason those big fluffy american style pancakes have just eluded me. Ask Tim and he'll tell you about all the times he's come home to find an irritated sweaty wife standing by the stove muttering angry words at a blob of mess in a pan with crusty pans and bowls all over the countertop, dried on batter on the stove and Hong Kong Express on speed dial. Trust me, it's not pretty. Even the powdered kind you allegedly just have to add wet ingredients to don't work.

So you can imagine my delight when a friend told me about a discovery her Dad had made. Her daughter likes to have pancakes or waffles for breakfast. But going through all that effort and mess every morning for one pancake for a finicky toddler that might decide they're not hungry after all is just too much work if it's not a special occasion! Her Dad came across this in the refridgerated section of Publix:

I'm not a fan of processed food. Why pay extra for something you can make cheaper from scratch, when you can pronounce all the ingredients in it and guarantee it's good for your kids to eat? But I was SO happy when I went and found it for myself next to the whipped cream in a can and coffee creamer - a part of the store I never would have gone to on my own. The ingredients were all recognizable and organic to boot.

I tried it out on the kids this afternoon and they were very very pleased. They wolfed down every last bite! The batter does float out quite a lot so it was easier to do a few large pancakes than lots of little ones. They were fluffy but not chewy. A little sweet but not too much, just enough salt and nice crispy edges. And the cleanup was only a pan and a spatula!

Sometimes you've just got to admit defeat!! I'll definately use this again. I even found a coupon

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Menacing mangos!

Max loves mangos. Adores them. He'll eat a whole one in one sitting. He's never had a reaction to eating one.

Last week he woke up with the most hideous rash on his face. It looked like both cheeks and his lips were covered in a poison ivy rash! It really looked horrendous. The only thing I could think of that could have caused it was his snack the day before. I'd cut off the two sides of the mango and cubed it for him. Obviously he wanted more because he went and got the seed and the skins and tried to eat the little scraps that were left. In the process he had smeared the mango and apparently the skin as well all over his face trying to get every last bit of fruit.

After some research we found out that the skin of a mango contains the same chemical that causes reactions to poison ivy! Who knew? Poor buddy, he looked pretty bad for a few days until it went away on it's own (the photo was taken about three days later). So be warned about the hazards of mangos!


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Sundaes on Saturday

Is there anything more fun than watching a child enjoy an icecream sundae? Pure joy.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Okefenokee swamp

Today we arrived at the Okefenokee swamp and it was a first to the kids and I, Tim had been there once before when he was about 10.

We had a guided boat tour of the swamp. Our host, TJ, has been giving the tour for 30 years and has made friends with two of the alligators, Erin and Sweetie. He brings them little treats like marshmallows and the occasional chicken leg. So now when they hear his voice, they come swimming to see him, fast!

Thanks to TJ we got a very up close and personal experience with these amazing and very powerful creatures. Definitely worth a visit if you've never been before!

Hopefully I can figure out how to upload photos from my phone so that you can see them for yourself.

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

ETA: that is how close we got, those photos were taken on Tim's phone with NO zoom. You could literally reach out and touch them, if you were stupid enough to try!!

Swamp creatures!

Every weekend we just look at each other and say "lets go somewhere" and proceed to list a number of places we'd go if we had the time. Yesterday evening Tim looked at me and said "let's go." So off we're going. First to the swamp to see aligators and then we're headed East to the beach.

I love love love last minute surprise vacations, the kids were very excited when we told them where we were going today. Hopefully we'll have lots of fun photos to share when we get back on Monday.