Thursday, November 27, 2008

Where we're going...

Jack can officially see where we're going...not just where we've been. This week signified the turning around of the car seat. I know he didn't grow any overnight, but he just looks so much older and more grown up sitting so upright...weird, I know! Must be one of those mom things. As you can see, he's still silly when turned around.

Wednesday night we asked the Shaws to join us at the Magical Night of Lights at Lake Lanier Islands. I'm a sucker for Christmas lights and a little eager to begin some silly holiday traditions with Jack, I guess. The lights were good...Britton (the Shaw's nearly 3 y/o) enjoyed them the most. At the end of your driving tour, there's a silly holiday carnival. Thankfully, Jack's not old enough yet to care about riding anything.

Brit took a trip on the carousel and the train, while the big boys tossed skee ball. Derek one a nice prize for all the kids. We finished our stay with a stop at the fire pits, where you can roast marshmallows. (Which they charge for by the if you didn't pay enough to ride through.) Overall, it was fun and I would go back. If you do decide to go: 1. try to get as many people in your car/minivan as possible (I think 9 is the limit); 2. bring your own marshmallows and coat hangers and roast away (we even saw a family who brought their own graham crackers and hershey bars!); 3. pre-purchase your ticket online (you save $10 from the gate price) and use the coupon code 5253 when checking out to save an additional $5.

It's the season of thanksgiving and the season for a very big celebration at our house. Jack turns ONE on Friday! Wild, right? It seems like I just started this blog and now he's a year old. Here's Jack with someone I'm very thankful for, his great grandfather. It was great spending time with family today for Thanksgiving and all the great food ain't bad either. Enormous thanks to Josh's sister and her fiance who delivered a massive spread for dinner (they felt bad b/c Josh was on call and couldn't join me and Jack in Athens). We thought they were bringing by a plate, but instead brought enough to feed an army! How thankful we are for such wonderful family!

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Big Gorge

We spent Saturday afternoon at Tallulah Gorge with some friends who had come up to visit for the day. It was a very chilly day, but we bundled up and enjoyed the beautiful views. Jack enjoyed being outside and riding on Josh's shoulders. Here are a couple of photos from our hike.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Our little Picasso

We have a stainless steel fridge, so the front is not magnetic. It certainly means a clean look, but there's no place to display our little ones first piece of artwork. One day a week Jack goes to the preschool at our church for a few hours. On Thursday, he made this.

Cute, huh? I guess we have a budding artist on our hands :) I wonder if they let him choose which hand to make the turkey with. He is definitely favoring his left for most things these days. He feeds himself mostly with his left hand. Last night, we were at Cracker Barrel and Josh put a little bit of ranch dressing on his spoon and let him hold it. He knew exactly what to do. It was so much fun watching him figure out how to use it. Oh, there's a Krispy Kreme in Commerce now! So, we learned that Jack likes ranch dressing and hot doughnuts!

Today we went to Tallulah Gorge with some friends. I'll post some photos soon.

Sorry for the links to the photos. Blogger wouldn't let me add photos tonight.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Tag...I'm it

So, a friend of mine recently tagged me on her blog. I was tagged to share 7 random things about myself. I'm just now getting around to putting my mind to it.

Here goes:
1. I love college football. Specifically, Georgia football, but I'll watch just about any teams. I not really sure when the love began...maybe in the womb. I think my mom "carried me" to a bowl game and then the season following my first birthday was quite a memorable ones for the Dawgs. I like to think my parents were on cloud 9...a beautiful one-year-old girl and a national championship. What more could two people want? Oh, yeah a 4-year-old son! :)

2. I find great satisfaction in having empty clothes hampers at my house. I don't really mind doing the laundry either. I think I like it because it's a pretty mindless task.

3. I constantly think about creating a TO DO list, but never do. I think about writing things down, but never seem to get around to it. Then I forget what I need to do/buy. This drives my husband crazy! He loves lists.

4. The idea of scrapbooking is very appealing to me. I used to really enjoy doing, but can't seem to make myself dedicate the time to it these days. My excuse these days is time & space. I know pretty lame.

5. Gift wrapping is one of my favorite things to do. I love wrapping presents in pretty papers and big bows. It shows you went the extra step of getting out tape and scissors. That being said, I still take the short cut and use a bag and tissue every now and then. Mostly, because...

6. I'm incredibly frugal went it comes to some things. I cut coupons (of which only about 10% probably get used) and reuse gift bags and tissue! Ooops...telling all my secrets! I made a special trip to CVS today just to save 25% on my purchases.

7. I love correspondence. I find great joy in writing and mailing notes to friends and family. I guess because I know how happy I am after opening a handwritten note from the mailbox.

Now, I'm supposed to tag 7 of my friends, so here goes:








Tag,'re it!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

We love you, Papa

Dearest Papa,

You're home now. You're with your lovely wife of 60-plus years. You're with your Heavenly Father. I can only imagine how peaceful it must be for you now. Your pain, frustration and confusion must surely be gone now.

I'm thankful we were able to see you last week. I'm thankful that you were able to meet your great grandson and spend most of a year getting to know him. I know he won't remember getting to know you, but we'll tell him all about you and his great grandmother. We'll make sure he knows what special people you both were.

I'm so thankful to have so many special memories of you. Some that I am able to touch on a daily basis, like my cedar hope chest. I wonder if you've already begun to craft benches, shelves, tables and such in your new home. Thanks for sharing your beautiful craftmanship with your family and friends.

I have to admit, we're shedding tears here for you. We can't help but think of how much we'll miss you, but I am comforted knowing that any tears you may shed will be ones of happiness.

We love you, Papa.

*John Blakely Giles, Sr. died Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Monday, November 10, 2008

Dancing the Day Away

Thursday night Jack got his first real haircut. Josh had previously trimmed the sides while I was out of the house, but this was an all around hair cut. I held him still while Josh did the trimming. It looks so cute and even more like a little boy and not a baby! I can't believe he'll be one in a couple of weeks!

Since I can't remember what I mention in my posts and I'm too lazy to review previous posts, I probably end up repeating myself. Anyway, Jack is beginning to show more signs of some word development. Josh and I both swear he said or tried to say "milk" a couple of weeks ago. He seems to be saying "Daa" or "Maa" when being held by one of us, but I don't know if I'm ready to chalk any up as first words. Am I just an idiot or is this first word thing really supposed to be clear cut? Despite my uncertainity for his word development, he has definitely figured out that cars, trucks, tractors, etc. make a motor sound. Whenever he is pushing a toy with wheels he makes a motor sound with his mouth. It is so cute and funny! As you can see from this photo, he also loves his blocks. He takes them out of the box and puts them back in over and over again.

Josh, Jack and I went shopping on Sunday to try and get some work done on our Christmas list. We stepped into Brookstone, where an Ipod tower was blaring music and Jack just started grooving in his stroller. I captured some of it with my camera. If you have 53 seconds with nothing else to do, check it out.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

A Great Read

If you're looking for a great read, I'd like to make a recommendation: The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. I would say I don't have a lot of time to read, but really I don't make enough time to read as often as I'd like. But, when Josh picked this book up in Amelia Island last week and mentioned it was along the lines of Tuesdays with Morrie (one of my favorites; What? I like sappy books), I thought it sounded interesting. He'd heard about a few months back and had been wanting to pick it up. On Sunday, I thought I'd use our 6 plus hour ride home to see if this thing was any good.

Well, it is. In fact, I highly recommend it. It's an easy read and can be read in pieces easily...although I knocked it out in a few hours on Sunday. The book is a recount of a professor's observations, life lessons, etc. as he prepares and then delivers a "Last Lecture." Unlike typical last lectures, this will truly be his last lecture as he is terminally ill. Anyway, after you read the book, you can watch the lecture online. The book was written after the lecture gained national recognition.

Doughnuts for Democracy?

Tuesday after we voted we headed down to Athens to visit my grandfather, who is in the hospital. On our way back home, we found ourselves staring at red, glowing Hot Doughnuts NOW sign. It lured us in like a moth to a flame. We resisted the urge to order dozens and requested one each. When we arrived at the window to pay we heard, "did you guys vote today?" We proudly replied we had and showed our stickers. "No Charge."

I read on Facebook about free coffee at Starbucks & ice cream at Ben & Jerry's for voters. This is something I could get used to. Can we have an election every month? (Minus the campaign ads, of course!) Some of us are really wishing for a do-over and not just for the doughnuts. :)

Monday, November 3, 2008

If you're happy and you know it...

Clap your hands, right? In the last two weeks Jack has really taken to clapping. I think I mentioned he learned it, but he does it all the time now. It really is cute. Here's a picture of him and his friend Naomi at the beach this weekend. He's too busy to hold her hand because he's clapping his hands!

Jack is such a busy boy these days. Although I know he enjoyed himself during our trip, he was so happy to be home. Last night, he played and played crawling all around the floor and pulling up on the couch and ottoman as if he had missed them while we were gone. He hasn't really figured out this whole time change thing, but we're working on it. He's been up at 5 the last two mornings, which is not my preferred waking hour. I'm hoping an early nap today will help encourage a longer slumber tonight.

I've uploaded several photos from our trip. You can view them on our Picasa site. They are in the October & November albums. Don't forget to vote, if you haven't already.

My Advance Apologies

Disclaimer: I'll begin this entry with an advance apology/disclaimer, it may veer off the subject of a cute and cuddly nearly one-year-old and into subjects not usually gracing this page, but it was an interesting weekend. So, read on at your own risk. If you hate the entry, ignore it and check back because I'm sure I'll soon be back to normal.

As you may have read from my previous post, we spent a long weekend at Amelia Island in north Florida. It is a beautiful place with a charming downtown area with shops and restaurants. We had the opportunity to spend our trip with Daniel, Rachel & Naomi Gowder, some friends of ours that currently live in Texas. We don't get to see them as often as we'd like, so it was a special treat to be together again. Naomi is 2 1/2 going on 15; she's so cute and sweet and a ball of energy. She had a good time playing with Jack and his toys. They were very cute as Tinkerbell and a monkey on Friday night as we enjoyed the halloween festivities.

Josh's mom watched the kids at the condo during the game on Saturday, which was the most unpleasant portion of the trip. It wasn't just because we lost; we're used to that. We lose all the time to the Gators in Jacksonville. What made it so bad is we didn't get trampled by an awesome team (like what happened against Alabama). We instead gave the game away. Remember, I warned you about this entry. Anyway, I don't consider myself a big whiner. When we lose, I accept it and move on, but Saturday was just sorry. Up until the final minutes we beat the gators in total offense. I mean it's pretty easy to score when you get the ball on the 10-yard line everytime, which is where we kept giving it to them.

Missed field goals, interceptions, fumbles, you name it - it went against us. We couldn't catch a single break and surely not from the refs. Two bogus calls (a very favorable UF spot & a mysterious penalty) gave the Gators their first touchdown drive. Does anyone think it's completely bogus of the SEC to put the same head official on this game after what happened last year? Penn Wagers hates Georgia, that was evident when he tried to give last year's Auburn game away to the Tigers. Our kicker couldn't hit a simple field goal and the momentum just tumbled completely in favor of Florida.

Also, is it just me or are Florida fans disgusting? (No offense, Sarah) Just a reminder about the disclaimer. I could count the number of collared shirts I spotted on UF fans. I'm not trying to be snooty or say you have to wear a collared shirt to a football game, but come on people...cut-off sleeves for the guys and trashy t-shirts for the ladies? It was not their best showing. I was actually standing next to one guy while waiting to get in who was proudly missing one of his front teeth. No joke. Anyway, so at least our fans have a better fashion sense.

Okay, last thing about the game, I promise...but no more whining about last year and how unsportsmanlike the dawgs are, Urban Cryer. Believe me, you showed everyone just how classy you are by hanging 49 points on us. I expected it; I wasn't at all surprised to see you run up the score. If you'd do it to pitiful Kentucky who you had no beef with, of course you'd do it to the team that embarrassed you and your team on a national stage last year. Thanks for being the bigger are the portrait of good sportsmanship.

I'm done. I feel better.

On the way back to the car, our group was discussing that our week was only going to get worse...Election day is Tuesday! I don't normally run around preaching about my political views, but this is my blog and I provided a disclaimer, remember. Anyway, I'll be one of the first to admit that George W. has not been one of our finest presidents. In fact, he's probably one of the worst. He doesn't seem to be the brightest crayon in the box, but I do believe our president deserves our respect. Just because John McCain is a republican and has been endorsed by Bush doesn't mean they will do things just alike. I think even republicans can admit that things need a drastic turnaround. Anyway, I don't think the drastic turnaround we need is to start spreading the wealth around like socialists. As our wonderful pastor pointed out recently, the government was created to protect us from outside threats. The constitution never said anything about taking money from some people and giving it to others. Let me quickly follow that with the statement that I believe money should be moving from some pockets to others, but it should be a choice. Just like I choose to give money and time to my church; the boy scouts; the free clinic; the soup kitchen, etc. I also have great fears about someone who supports partial-birth abortions. I just can't understand the support of such a horrific act.

Anyway, I'm off the soap box. You can be relieved. Later I'll post some cute pictures from our trip and tell you more about all the cute things that Jack is up to these days!