Thursday, March 31, 2011

Maggie-isms

A few new Maggie-isms

  • They are learning about weather in Pre-K (and a little from the movie "Up"). As we were driving home from work one day, she looked out the window and said "Mom, look at those cutie-o-nimbus clouds!"

  • Maggie is really into the whole princess thing right now. She loves to watch all 3 (yes there are 3) Cinderella movies. She told Rocky that she has a "true love." But as she wants it to be a "family secret", I won't divulge the object of her affection.

  • After watching "Tangled" last night (which really is a cute movie), Rocky asked Maggie if he could kiss a girl. She said no, he has to kiss a woman. So, of course, he asked if he could kiss any woman. She replied "No! Only the woman you love!"

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Kiddie Lit -- revisited

There is a book fair at daycare this week. And even though we have enough books to start our own kiddie library, I'm always a sucker to buy more books for the girls. Jessie has hit that stage of wanting to literally devour books and Maggie is starting to ask for "just one more book" at night. I haven't gotten her into chapter books yet, but they have started some in Pre-K, so I'm really hoping that she's about ready to start the Little House series.

Here are a few books that we've gotten from the daycare book fairs

Shark vs. Train: who's tougher? who's smarter? Who wins a video competition? Well, neither because they don't have thumbs!
Dinosaurs Love Underpants: want to know the real reason dinosaurs went extinct? It was really because of their love of underpants!
Stop that Pickle!: A tale similar to the "Gingerbread Man" with a twist at the end. Maggie loves to join in with "Stop that Pickle!" in different voices that make Jessie giggle nonstop.
ABC Animal Jamboree (Rumble in the Jungle, Commotion in the Ocean) I'm planning to purchase this one for Jessie's first birthday. At Maggie's old daycare, they had the "Rumble in the Jungle" and "Commotion in the Ocean" which we would read in the mornings. Each page has a different animal with a different type of poem, some rhyming, some rhythmic, and a few limericks!

Monday, March 21, 2011

More Wine!


At the last wine festival we attended in Virginia, I bought Tre Sorelle, Fabbioli Wines, a red the wine maker recommended we wait 5 years before trying it. It was dated 2005, so last year, I started looking for the right time to open it. After all, when you wait 5 years for a wine, you don't just open it for no reason!

Then, a friend from church, Diane decided to have a little party for her birthday and as I know Diane enjoys a nice wine I thought this would be a great opportunity. I did bring a 2nd bottle (Menage a Trois), just in case.

When I got there we opened it to let it breathe. After a glass of another red, I tried a glass. It was very very nice. Smooth. And now I'm a little disappointed that the wine is from a small winery in Virginia so I probably won't be able to get another bottle.
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Sunday, March 20, 2011

A star is born (9 months ago)!

Jesse is about to make her television commercial debut this week. We don't know when the commercial will be on, but we have a copy of it below. She's the happy, clapping kid.
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Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Value of a Dollar, revisited

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Like every other 5 year old, Maggie loves toys and loves to look at toys in the store and tell us what toys she “needs.”  About a year ago, we started giving her an allowance intermittently.  And we’ve also been taking the Dave Ramsey course and he talks about teaching your children the value of a dollar, making them earn their money, and teaching them about spending, saving and giving.  So I got her 3 coin purses and marked them  “Spend”  “Save” “Give”.  Whenever we gave her money or if she got money, we prompted her to divide it up and put some in each purse.  Sometimes she is very generous and wants to put it all in the give purse (though she hasn’t had an opportunity to even put it in the collection plate at church).  Lately, though, she has been talking about needing a new toy.  So, today, before our trip to Wal-Mart, we got her purse and her bank and counted her coins to see how much she could spend.  Quite surprisingly, she had over $15.  We loaded up her coin purse and headed out.

At Wal-Mart, Rocky took Maggie to the toy section and I did the grocery shopping.  They were back before I was done.  She found a Zoobles habitat for exactly $15.  She carried that toy through the store and up to the counter.  Rocky & I helped count out her coins (and the cashier said she was happy to get so many quarters and dimes)!

We decided the habitat should be a kitchen counter toy where Jessie can’t get it.  Maggie is very pleased with her purchase!

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Friday, March 18, 2011

Shoofly Wine, Wine of Australia

The name of this wine takes me back to my elementary school days when potty humor was the best kind and we loved to sing the "Shoo Fly" song. We'd get to the last line and sing "I'm very busy now." Tacking on "VERY busy now" with that knowing look on our faces.

I purchased this wine from Simply Wine, deciding I needed to after their Facebook post (Hi my name is Wendy and I'm addicted to Facebook). I got the Merlot based on the sellers recommendation and the Freckle, well, because I have freckles and think freckles are adorable. And yes that IS a good enough reason to pick a wine.

Tonight I'm enjoying the Freckle. I do like it which is kind of surprising. It'a fairly oaky and I'm not typically a fan of oaky whites. It's made from the "freckly" Roussanne grape, "and a few friends". The label boasts honeysuckle and peach flavors. It's a fun white and I think it will be a nice deck wine this summer.
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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

New Tricks

Jessie shows off some new "tricks."
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Friday, March 11, 2011

Wagon Rides!

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Yesterday, it was so nice out when we got home from work, that we decided to take a family walk.  We got out the wagon and the dogs’ harnesses – which they absolutely freaked out over!  Otis was a bit cautious as the last time we got them out, he went to the vet and got a shot.  Wiconi was jumping and barking and wagging all over she was so excited over the walk.  I wore the Moby wrap, just in case Jessie didn’t like the wagon, but I needn’t have bothered.  She loved riding with her big sister!!

The girls had a little time to play on the playground equipment.  It got chilly rather quickly, so we didn’t stay long, but I think we’ll be taking many many walks to the park this spring, summer and fall.  Maggie kept telling us that she is “over” winter.  I guess I am too.  It will be so nice to be able to get out and enjoy Montana life!

Playing on the playground equipment:

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Walking home. Maggie wanted to “help” walk the dogs.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

An Alternative View of Lent

My dad sent this to me today and I thought it was wonderful! The only thing I have "given up" this Lenten season is a parenting messaging board, which I don't know that giving that up really gets to the true meaning of Lent. I've been thinking about that. One of the stories told last night at Ash Wednesday services was about a friend of the pastor's who decided to give up Starbucks. And when he realized how much money he would save, he decided he could buy an iPad after Easter. So, is he giving up Starbucks for Lent or for the iPad?

So this is from Rev. Janet Kirkland Stark, Melrose Institute at Park Nicollet.

Today, thousands are celebrating the worldwide Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday -- a day of decadence prior to Ash Wednesday...the beginning of the Christian season of Lent. I am struck by the dichotomy in these two days. It reminds me a bit of all or nothing/black and white thinking: be completely bad and then you will have to petition for the next 40 days to get out of jail free. Although a bit irreverent and extreme...we work with a population that lives on the edges of extreme.

Lent is known as a scared time within the liturgical year of the Christian tradition where one participates in both personal and corporate "spiritual spring cleaning." The 40 days of Lent symbolize Jesus' wilderness journey: who he was, what he taught and what gifts his life, death and resurrection brought to people. Christians practice Lent thru spiritual fasting, prayer and charity. The purpose of fasting or letting something go is to awaken our spiritual hunger or need for God. Prayer focuses our hearts, minds and spirits on our connection to God. Charity is the practice of filling the empty space of what was "let go" with something that brings greater life and spirit.

Most religions have some form of this practice; all with the intention of awakening humanity to our spiritual selves. And like any spiritual practice, it can be harmful when not understood. People end up trading in their self and soul for a false ideal.

As I prepare to create time for people to participate in Ash Wednesday reflection, I find myself afraid. Afraid because our patients already live a lief of lent, living in the wilderness of their extremes. Their hunger and thirst is not just physical and mental ... it is spiritual as well. They long for a sustaining love and connection that meets them in the deepest part of their being, their soul, and says ... You are loved; you are enough; just as you are. letting go of something may only reinforced ED's black and white thinking and their sense of shame for having a disease.

As an alternative, I offer an updated version of Lent for you and your patients. Do something intentional to remind yourself that you are a spiritual being...making space for something else...

  • Let go of worry...send blessing to the person or situation instead
  • Let of go the need to be busy in every minute...set aside one minute to just breathe.
  • Let go of the noise in the morning...drive to work with your radio off
  • Let go of one TV program...think of something playful or creative and do it
  • Let go of one unrealistic expectation...identify what is real and practice living it
  • Let go of needing to KNOW ... be curious...

and wait to be surprised by a stretcher of grace that will find you.