Monday, August 27, 2007

Wish List

Just thought I'd mention that I have an Amazon Wishlist.... you know... just in case anyone was curious about what I'd like for things like Christmas, Easter, Hannukkah, Birthdays.... whatever....

My Wish List

I'd also like the Beany Malone series of books found here. You can get them on Amazon, but they are much more expensive!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Beauty School Drop Out

I'm not very good with doing hair. My mother would not allow us to have long hair when we were young. By the time I could do my own hair I realized that long hair really didn't look great on me. Now I have a daughter with lots of hair and I am really look forward to doing her hair! At the moment, it is getting long enough to cover her eyes, but I don't want to cut it. So I'm experimenting with different possiblities. Have you tried "doing" a 13 month old child's hair?? Next to impossible. I have to wait until she's in her high chair happily gulping down breakfast before I even attempt to do anything.

This is the barrette look:

This is the side ponytail look (the toothbrush works well for a distraction):

Both 'dos come out the minute she takes a nap....not good. One lady at church actually uses glue to get her daughter's hair to stay (it washes out). I'm not that desperate!

And just because Karin likes lots of pictures....


To those of you raising more than one small child (3 and younger). I am baby-sitting this school year. I have a 4 month old (Baby R) and a 3 year old (I) two days a week and a 6 week old (Baby L) two other days of the week. Plus Ella, of course! Last Friday I had the 2 kids plus Ella and whoa! Of course, this was our first day together and Baby R was not in his element and desperately needed my baby swing (which I loaned to his mom when he was born!). It wasn't awful or terrible or anything, but I was wiped! And how you get ANYTHING done other than mere survival of eating is beyond me. I'm thinking maybe 4-5 years between kids is more my style! The bonus, of course, was that Ella was totally occupied with I and they had loads of fun together. She was so giddy that she barely slept all day long and was still happy!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Do the Hustle!

Star in Your Own JibJab! It's Free!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Water Fun

In honor of today being the very last day of summer, we took Ella back to the Butterfly Park to play in the water. When we were there in June she couldn't walk and we thought she'd enjoy it more this time around. She had a fantastic time playing in the fountains!

Last Day of Summer!


Which Peanuts Character Are You?

You are Charlie Brown. You are always optimistic and persistent, and everyone appreciates your simple sweetness. Sometimes, however, your anxieties get the best of you, and life's mysteries can confuse you.
Find Your Character @

Just Life

Nothing much going on at the ranch. Daddy is back in school as of tomorrow with a busy week. But we have had some mild excitement around the home front lately.

Ella has taken to "dumpster diving" in our trash can. A few weeks ago I caught her picking out pieces of pancake and eating them. Last week I was sitting on the couch and she came around the corner with a 2 liter from the trash. She really enjoyed getting out the last drops of soda!

Last Thursday at a friends house Ella decided she wanted eat a banana! So we've been practicing eating those. She mostly just sucks on them, but hey I'll take what I can get!

She has been signing really, really well lately. Yesterday afternoon I turned off the news so we could leave for small group. Ella fussed and signed "baby". I gave her a doll which she threw down and signed "baby" again as she looked at the TV. It finally dawned on me that she wanted to watch "Baby" Signing Time!

I've been knitting some hats for the Campbells and Ella is my model/trier on-er!

Ella a la Blair Witch

Thursday, August 16, 2007

BPA Concerns

I received and email today regarding concerns of a certain type of plastic called BPA (that's short for a long scientific name) that is used to make bottles and sippy cups. There appears to be mixed research on whether the chemical in BPA can leak in to the fluids in the bottles/cups and then get in to a child's body causing damage. While I am in no way the type to jump on anyone band wagon that says not to do X or Y because it MIGHT be dangerous.... this one concerns me. Anything man made with little reasearch on the effects is scary. I tossed a few sippy cups and called the manufacturers of the others that weren't clearly marked (avoid 6 or 7 recycling marks). I thought I would post the info just in case anyone wanted to do some reasearch and make your own decision!

You can find the story in the LA Times, at this blog, and at Baby Bargains.

Fun Websites

As I was researching this polycarbonate/BPA thing in bottles and sippy cups, I ran in to a few fun sites I thought I'd post.

1)Z Recommends -- Kid Size Sushi: We love sushi and I've always wanted to try and do it at home. Thanks to these great instructions, I'm going to give it a whirl! Plus this just looks like a good blog to add to the reading list!

2) Mr. McGroovy's Box Rivets: All about how to build really cool things using boxes! Everything from pyramids to castles. I LOVE this idea and can't wait to use it with Ella. They also offer suggestions on how to find the larger boxes you need to build these cool play things!

3)Letterboxing: This is so cool! Hard to explain, you'll have to read it for yourself. There is another article here.

4) Children's Literature: This blog author is a professor at a seminary. This blog is dedicated to his reviews of children and family literature. Good resource to get beyond Disney books!

5) How about a glow in the dark birthday party??

And I almost forgot this great site (not for kids): Hungry Girl

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

DCI World Championships 2007: Pasadena, California

This past weekend Mitch and I drove to Pasadena, CA for the DCI World Championships at the Rose Bowl Stadium. Traffic was great and we made the trip in under four hours. We got to see the top 12 corps perform on Saturday night. Unfortunately, Mitch's corps, The Cadets, took second place. He's sure it was a scam because the corps that won (The Blue Devils) were from California.

For the first time in almost 13 months -- we were alone for over 24 hours. It was great! I was not nearly as Ella-sick as I thought I would be. Ella was great for Aunt Michelle. She only cried once -- when we got home and Aunt Michelle left (no joke).

Here we are at the Rose Bowl Stadium. It was a hallowed moment for me. Let us take a moment to appreciate......

Our favorite show of the evening was performed by Carolina Crown and it was titled "Triple Crown" (it was a horse show).

And here are The Cadets

Last but not least, we had lunch at Chick Fil-A. We miss our Chick Fil-A!

Next year's finals are in Indianapolis. Mitch wants to know how far a drive that is from Scottville....

Friday, August 10, 2007

Our Little Cadet

This weekend Mitch and I are heading to Pasadena, California for the Drum Corps International (DCI) Music Games. This show is the end of the season for the Drum Corps. When Mitch was in undergrad he marched with The Cadets, a DCI corps. In honor of his corps, we all got tee shirts -- even Ella. Since she is staying home with Aunt Michelle, she gets to wear her tee shirt today.

Practicing Marching

I love DCI!

And I am going to the Rose Bowl for the first time in my life! As a member of the Van Buren family, I am a devout fan of the University of Michigan and the Big Ten thus I have been watching the Rose Bowl game on TV since I was born. I am very excited to be going to the stadium! Someday soon we'll make it over for the game and parade.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Ella Playing

The Case of the Missing Towels

In early June as I was getting ready for Sarah's arrival, I went looking for a Mickey Mouse bath towel for her. Couldn't find it. We own 4 sets of towels -- 2 gray and 2 purple. I changed the towels around the same time and was missing a gray, a purple and 2 small gray towels. As towels are kept on the top shelf of closets in our home, I asked the person taller than I if he/she had seen them. Nope. Couldn't find them either. We scratched our heads, cleaned out the closets, and found nothing.

Fast forward to today. I have been hanging laundry outside to dry since sometime mid-May so we don't use the dryer. For some reason another adult in the house decided to check the dryer today. Lo and behold. Towels. Lots and lots of towels.

Playing Outside

This morning when we woke up it was in the 70s with low humidity. So we turned off the AC, threw open the windows and went out to play! As Ella ran around, I got bored so I got out the camera to take some shots.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

I am a Princess

Which Disney Princess Are You?

You are Cinderella. You are hard-working and never complain, however, your trust is sometimes misplaced and people sometimes take advantage of you. Still, you are beautiful inside and out, and one day you will realize it and find true love.
Find Your Character @

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Go Mets!

Daddy found this onesie when we were in NY last November. At the time I couldn't imagine her ever fitting in to it (it is size 18 months), but today she wore it for the Mets v. Cubs game. And she was way too interested in the game to bother with getting a picture taken!


Ella has been siging "potty" to us whenever we got to the bathroom and she ALWAYS has to be in there with you. If you close the door, she sits outside and bangs on it. So we decided to go ahead and get her a potty to sit on while she's in there. Now, I don't expect her to be potty trained anytime soon, but her big sister was out of diapers at 18 months so here's hoping!

Ella sat on the potty in the kitchen for a good 15 minutes. Then we put it in the bathroom and her on it... she forgot something as you can see in the pictures.

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