Friday, August 28, 2009

Visiting Grammie

Nicky and I went down to visit Grammie, Aunt Liz and Aunt Jodi this past weekend. We had a great time! Liz and Jodi threw a huge surprise birthday party for her and it was truly spectacular! My mom has never had a surprise party before and she was floored! She really had no idea what we had in store. There were over 20 of her dearest friends there, and it was a lot of fun.

Of course I took a few photos, and so I had to put them up on the web. But when went to upload them I found that my second photobucket account is full! Time for a third one. You'll notice another link on the top left menu there. Too bad it's right smack in the middle of a month. Aw well.

Nicky was pretty good in the car. It was just the two of us, as Tom stayed behind to watch the dogs. We didn't have any accidents, and he didn't keep saying he had to go potty when he really didn't. Thank goodness, because that drove me nuts the last trip.

But we all know what you really want out of this post. So feast your eyes on how Nicky spent part of the 5 hour drive down to Grammie's:
Nicky,Grammie's Bday,car

And how he spent a good bit of the 5 hour drive back:
Grammie's Bday,Nicky,car

While we were there he did a little splashing:
Nicky,Grammie's Bday,pool

And ate a lot of marshmallows:
Nicky,Grammie's Bday

All in all a successful, memorable trip. Thanks Grammie!
Nicky,Grammie's Bday,Grammie

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Overheard from the backseat

Nicky has started talking to himself and his toys during imaginative play lately. Holding little conversations with his cars and things. Oh, and sometimes singing softly to himself. Nonsense songs that he makes up on the fly. (Yay, he gets that from me!)

Yesterday on the way to school

From the backseat: "J..J..Jet? No."

Me thinking: Oh wow, this new school IS amazing!

Continuing from the backseat: "J..J..Ice Cream? No. J..J..Big Frog? No."

Me thinking: Aw well, maybe not THAT amazing.

Yesterday on the way home

From the backseat: "I have to sign it. I..E..I..S..E..R. Nicholas."

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Ye Auld AMC

Tom and I met at the Gainesville Oaks 6 theater in 1993. I only worked there one year,and Tom two years, but we have fond memories of the experience. It was a fun place to work. I mean, get a bunch of college students together, put them in charge of running two theaters and there were a lot of crazy hijinks going on! (And we're all probably STILL pretty sick of eating movie theater popcorn.)

Well, via Facebook we've gotten in touch with a lot of the old theater crowd. And last night Tom and I met five of the old crew. It was great to catch up, see how everyone turned out and reminisce. We had Nicky along with us, and he was really good, especially considering the only nap he'd had was the last 5 minutes of the car ride to the mall and the first 20 minutes or so as we waited for everyone to arrive and decide on where to go for dinner.

We ended up going to the Macaroni Grill. We'd met in the Oaks mall, right in front of where the old theater used to be. It's been converted into an Ambercrombie & Fitch store now and is completely unrecognizable! Nicky ate two full orders of Macaroni and Cheese and was really good, especially considering we probably stayed in the restaurant for 2 hours or so.

We're looking forward to getting together with an even bigger crew for the UF/FSU game this November. I tell you, it's pretty amazing how Facebook can bring folks back together who otherwise would have just been lost to us.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

Nicky's first day of catholic school

He had a fabulous first day.

We are going to be waking up insanely early (for us) to get him to school on time, but on the bright side, I'll always be early to work and therefore able to leave earlier!

In order to get him to school by 8am though we will have to be up at 6am, and get him up about 6:30. That's rough when none of us are used to waking up till about 8am. He wasn't too thrilled this morning, but we managed. And he actually ate breakfast too, which was awesome. I had planned ahead and bought a box of Fruit Loops knowing he'd be much more likely to eat if it was a "fun" cereal instead of the normal "healthy" ones we usually have.

I had fun last night packing his lunch. I'd picked up all sorts of stuff to try to get him at least a few things he'll eat in there each day. Today he had a juice box, PBJ sandwich, apple slices, grapes, fruit gummies and a cookie. He ate half the sandwich, the apples and the fruit snack. He skipped the cookie and grapes. What kid doesn't eat his cookie?

Tonight after dinner, Nicky and I took a shower and then made his lunch for tomorrow. I tried to get input from him this time. He said he wanted grapes and that was about as far as I got. So tomorrow he has: a juice box, half a PBJ, pretzel sticks, cheese, grapes, fruit gummies, a cookie (the same one) and a cereal straw. Friends of ours brought him two boxes of these Fruit Loop cereal straws and he loves them. So I put that in there as a treat. (You know, since apparently a cookie isn't treat-y enough. I suppose it is an oatmeal raisin cookie, but he LIKES those, I swear!)

His old preschool/daycare supplied lunches so this whole packing a lunch thing is new. It's fun at this point, but I'm sure it'll get old fast. Packing it the night before seems to work well though. Now if only I could get mine packed the night before too. Nah, too much work.

I had him in his room for "rockabye" tonight by 7pm in an effort to have him be more awake tomorrow. We read one story (twice) and then I rocked him through only ONE song. He cried the whole time about needing Nana, needing Daddy, needing to go to the big potty (he has a little potty in his room, but his favorite stalling tactic is to demand to go to big potty instead). But I hung tough, put him in his bed after that one song and then sat with him for 3 more songs. By the end of the 3rd one (after fussing constantly) he totally passed out. Kid was beat! He had a big first day of school, and now with a good night's sleep he'll be ready for another big day tomorrow.

It's a lot of fun. Even more like "real school" now since it's at the local catholic school that has PreK3-8th graders. It was a hard decision on whether to leave him at O2B for another year or so or move him now, but I think this is going to be really good for him. It seems to be a smaller class, has two full time teachers all day, and the day runs from 8am to 2:45. It's a much shorter day, but it's every day. He was really getting his schedule messed up only going twice a week this last month. I think the structure this will bring will be nice for all of us.


This was a very early morning for Nicky. Normally he wakes about 8am. Today, we went in to wake him up at 6:30am.


But it was a special day today! Today was Nicky's first day of school.


He started PreK3 at the catholic school. He might have been a little nervous.


But he was mostly excited!


We'd gone to the open house yesterday, so he'd seen his class and met a few kids and the teachers. He was ready to go.


But it wasn't easy letting him.


Monday, August 10, 2009

Ball at the beach

Nicky brought up the beach Saturday. He brings it up quite a bit, even though we've only taken him twice in his life I think. The last time was last fall, so it's been a while. But Tom and I are done with our summer classes and have no homework hanging over our heads for a change, so we packed up Sunday morning and headed to Crescent Beach near St. Augustine.

We arrived around 2 or so. Nicky didn't fall asleep until about 4 miles from the beach but he woke up pretty quick once we got out of the car. We found public parking and a nice little entrance that wasn't too crowded. We slathered sunscreen on ourselves, spread out our gear and headed for the water.

Nicky had a wonderful time in the surf, and wasn't afraid at all, which actually was a little worrisome as we had to run to catch him waist deep in the water twice. If he'd fallen over he'd have been under in a second. We were right next to the lifeguard station, but still, I'd rather he have a little respect for the power of the undertow.

Most of the time we worked on digging in the sand and collecting shells. We took him out to play in the swells a bit, but the tide was out and it was only about 4 feet deep at the deepest point before the sandbar that was about 30 feet out. It was a really nice beach and Nicky had a ball wrecking Tom's carefully sculpted sand castle faster than he could build it.

Tom ended up with a sunburn on only one leg somehow. He hadn't put any sunscreen on his legs. I ended up with a raging sunburn on my shoulders, right on top of the one I got Saturday taking Nicky to the pool party, even though this time both Tom and I had put sunscreen on me. I think my blouse rubbed the sunscreen off my shoulders though. Nicky was the only one in good shape after 3 hours at the beach. I'd coated him twice and he wore a t-shirt to boot. Apparently though, for someone who really doesn't ever get any sun, me, an SPF of 30 is just not nearly good enough. Usually we use SPF 75, but it was running low and I had a huge bottle of SPF30.

My shoulders say I will not be making this mistake again though. Wearing a bra was murder today.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

New floors!

I can't believe I haven't told you this yet!

We have new floors!

Tom and I took the plunge and ripped out the carpet from the bedrooms, hallway and living room, replacing them with wood laminate. Well, that's an exaggeration, WE didn't do any of that, WE paid a team of guys to deliver the wood and then install it. THEY ripped out the carpets, put in the wood floors in less than a day(!) and took the carpet away!

The day they came, I took Nicky to school and myself to work. I was still gimping around on my bum hip, but I could drive. Luckily we'd gotten the temporary handicapped parking thingy, so I could park close to work. It would have been the end of me if I tried to walk from the normal lot!

I totally expected to come home to chaos as we'd been told it would take two days. But around 3pm Tom IM'd me that they were done and gone. Then I expected to see a huge heap of carpet by the side of the road, killing the grass (er, weeds) and figured we'd be looking at that for a week or two before it was picked up. Nope! I get home and the curb is clear. They hauled it all away. Awesome! I totally recommend paying to have floors installed. If we'd tried to do this ourselves it would have taken us forever!

As it was, it did take us a good few days to move everything that wasn't furniture into the den. They would move furniture, but we had to move all the clothes, toys, books, shoes, crap under the bed, etc. And there was a lot of it! But now you can see our new floors so well that we haven't moved all that stuff back yet. I don't want to cover them up! We did set up Nicky's room right away though. Here's a photo. We still need to finish his walls. We have the chair rail to go up, but need the gizmo to cut the angles.

The new floor!

Doesn't it look great? We have the quarter round to put around the edges of the bedrooms (that already have baseboards) and need to get baseboards for the living room and hall, but it already looks beautiful.

I first tried taking photos of the floors and accidentally took a movie instead. Check it out. Nicky was a little under-dressed for it, but I'm pretty sure you can't see anything. He loved the new floors and was so excited to play on them when he got home that he just had to get naked I guess. He'd stripped down before I even put my stuff down and grabbed the camera. He said he was a puppy, and of course you know puppies don't wear clothes. Funny boy!

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Party Time

Nicky went to his first pool party today. He'd been invited to a birthday party for a little girl at his preschool. We'd waffled about whether to attend or not, but in the end we had the weekend free and when I asked him who the little girl was he said she's "my girl," so of course we had to go!

Tom stayed home to mow the lawn, and Nicky and I left early so I could go to my meeting this morning (not doing so great the last few weeks by the way). After the meeting we went to Toys R Us to shop for a gift (nothing like waiting till the last minute eh?) and Nicky picked out a Dora bubble kit. Since the invitation had Dora on it, and it was a spill proof, non-battery toy, I thought it was a great choice. I already had wrapping paper, scissors and tape in the car, so I was able to skip buying any bags or paper. I thought about a pretty ribbon, but they were expensive at Toys R Us, so I improvised by adding a few origami cranes to the package instead. It looked beautiful.

We still had over an hour before the party, which was at noon. I wasn't 100% sure if there would be lunch there, and if we were going to swim first I thought it prudent to make sure Nicky had something besides the dried fruit he'd eaten at 9am to sustain him. So we went to the food court in the mall for a slice of pizza really quick. Nicky was so excited about the fountain being on (which was on for the first time in recent memory) that we sat next to the fountain while we ate.

When we finished our pizza, he got to throw 6 pennies into the fountain (hey, it was for Habitat for Humanity, so I splurged). He made his wishes on each penny. And the few he said out loud were for a brother and sister. Let's all hope that at least one of those wishes comes true! For the record, the wish for a sister came first.

After pizza we headed to the party. We were the first ones there, so we helped set up. As the other kids arrived, Nicky was a little thrown at first as these were the kids from his school, so maybe it was time to act like school. He told a few kids to use their "inside voices" and "no running feet" before he gave up and just started playing with the rest of them. There was a tumble-mat there that they had fun running, jumping and tumbling on throughout the inside part of the party.

In the end, there were about 18 kids there total, and probably 20+ parents. The kids ate pizza, cheese, crackers and fruit. Nicky ate, even though we'd just had pizza. You should have seen this pizza! There were four choices: cheese (boring), mushroom (he doesn't do mushrooms anymore), black olives (he doesn't do those anymore either) and macaroni! OMG, you should have seen his reaction to that. Pizza AND pasta? At the SAME TIME? Wow!

The kids did some finger painting (which I totally forgot to bring home, oops) and then got to decorate their own chocolate cupcakes. That was an interesting idea. There was a little cake (for the grownups, but I skipped) for the birthday girl to blow out the candles (Nicky and I were in the bathroom, so any drama over who blew out the candles was avoided). But the kids all got a chocolate cupcake, two raspberries, a few M&Ms and gummy bears, and a little medicine cup of icing with a popsicle stick. They had fun decorating, although I don't think they really ate much. (Excellent!)

Then we headed out to the pool. There were some pool noodles and kickboards available, so we grabbed a noodle. Nicky swam around in the shallow end (which was a good 4 feet deep) for about 2 hours with me. I'd re-sunscreened him before we went out, and re-did my face too. But I ended up with a nice sunburn anyway on my shoulders. (I totally blame Tom for not sunscreening me up properly this morning. Although he was really nice and aloe-d me up this evening.) Nicky even went underwater several times and only swallowed a little water once! He did great and had a lot of fun.

We actually stayed till he was the only kid left. We all went back inside and had the birthday girl open the gift from Nicky. He did so well giving it to her.

By the way, what is the deal these days with not opening gifts at the party? Remember when we were kids and you'd have cake and then open presents and play games? Well apparently these days no one opens presents at the party anymore. I understand that it really takes a lot of time to do it, and the kids might get all jealous (especially the little ones), but that's kind of how they learn that sometimes you GIVE presents, and you don't always GET them. You know? I was glad we stayed and let him see her open her gift. I think it's a great lesson in giving. And I think we'll be the gauche family who continue to open presents at birthday parties. Just warning you now. ;)

So next year I think we'll be doing a party for Nicky's birthday. He's starting a new school next week (a whole other post there!) and will have a whole class to invite. I think he'll be ready for that kind of party by then. I don't know if Tom and I will, but we'll do it anyway. Maybe not in our house though. That was a LOT of kids.
(I was looking for a photo to add here of Nicky in his swim trunks, but dang I've been slacking on the photography! Here's one of him this summer at his Grammie's house.)

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

The Tooth Pirate

We've been talking about this for a long time now, and I want to make sure I don't forget about this before it's time to act.

When we brush Nicky's teeth, we get him to say "Arrrgh!" Just like a pirate so we can brush his front teeth.

Lately, I've been talking with him about how when he gets a little older, his little teeth are going to start falling out so that he can grow big teeth like Mommy and Daddy have.

But we have to keep his little teeth very white, healthy and shiny clean, because the Tooth Pirate loves shiny, clean, white teeth.

And someday, when Nicky's teeth come out, we'll put them under his pillow.

Then, while he's sleeping, the Tooth Pirate will sneak into his room, probably on his little pirate ship, and take the little tooth away. But, the Tooth Pirate LOVES teeth even more than treasure, so he will leave some treasure behind in exchange for the tooth.

Doesn't that sound so much better than the Tooth Fairy? Arrrgh!

Nicky as pirate last Halloween. Looks like he's the Tooth Pirate, and he's thinking about maybe taking some of Nana's teeth.