Thursday, January 31, 2008

The BEST Toy Ever!


Before I really begin this post, I would like to point out the above photo. This room WAS tidy 10 minutes prior to the toy tornado (a.k.a. Chloe) coming through. Honestly, my patience has been worn thin as she moves from one item to another, rifling through her toys, throwing them everywhere. I have been seeking a toy that would hold Chloe's attention. She is an only-child (for the forseeable future anyway) and I am her main playmate.

Watching Chloe play at the science center this past weekend, gave me the idea of a new toy. Well, it's not so new. When Chloe was going through sensory therapy after she arrived home, this was a recommended toy---much to her displeasure. Her therapist had recommended that we fill a bathtub full of rice and put in some stacking cups for Chloe. Chloe with her sensory issues hated it, but 3.5 year old Chloe loves this toy now. Of course, I didn't fill a bathtub full of rice, I filled a large, square container with rice and placed in some spoons, measuring cups and a small pitcher. It provides hours of entertainment and she scoops and measures.
Yesterday, playgroup was at our house and all 5 kids were gathered around the rice box for 2 hours. Chloe will sit and play in the rice now forever. I had to pull her away for dinner tonight...not without some struggle.
Now, it isn't clean either, but I will opt for vaccuuming up rice off the floor of the playroom to a disaster area all over the house.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Visiting the Science Center

Matt went skiing last Sunday and since Chloe and I were still recovering from the sniffles, we ventured to the Liberty Science Center for the day. It was really hands-on and Chloe enjoyed all the exhibits (even if she didn't understand them).

Chloe moving sediment in the mock Hudson River.


Chloe inside the science center with Lady Liberty in the background.

On the rock wall.


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Cold-Weather Walk

Matt had MLK day off and we decided to scope out some of the area ski slopes and to go for a walk. We also found a nearby open-space/park that we had never been to and went for a walk. One of the things about living in this area are the "surprises" you can come across. Shortly after we began our walk, we turned the corner on the path to discover a huge pond, frozen with people ice-skating and playing hockey. Chloe enjoyed the walk and picking up leaves with her walking stick.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Ski Princess

Its a BANNER day in our household---Chloe learns to ski. Matt, Chloe and I went to the local ski shop and rented Chloe some skis for the season and purchased her the thermals, harness, helmet and ski gloves. Chloe loved the entire outfit and wore it most of Saturday evening (she even wore it to eat dinner). Sunday we all donned our ski attire at a local ski park run by the county. Its a small operation but was a fantastic place to teach a 3.5 year old how to ski. Matt talked with Chloe about "french fry" skis vs. "pizza slice" skis. We let Chloe get her balance on the skis and Matt did several magic carpet/bunny slope runs with Chloe.


Chloe had great fun and that was the biggest concern. We wanted to keep skiing fun. We did have one meltdown as the snow-making machines blew snow in her eyes and made her goggles scratchy (also is well-past nap time). But, after a break with snacks and chocolate milk, Chloe hit the slope one more time.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Catching Up

Chloe, Uncle John and Lizzie.


Matt and Chloe checking out the new guitar on Christmas morning.


PaPaw, Aunt Deanna, BeBe, Uncle John and Chloe at the Botanical Gardens train show.


Happy 2008!! New Year's here wasn't a huge celebration. In fact, it was quite the snooze-fest - all of us in bed at 9:30 p.m. I never think of myself as old, but man, I am not as young as I used to be! I am just knocking on the door of mid-30s and already I am going to bed on the most festive night of the year at the same time as lights out at the elderly care home! I guess I will just have to rock it out to 10:30 p.m. on Chinese New Year next month.

Christmas really took it out of me. My parents, sister and brother-in-law came for the holidays. We had a great time but we also had a series of unfortunate events-one after another-that took the wind out of the sails. It all began with the "skunking" and just continued on.

On Christmas day, my Dad checked on the turkey and had the disposable aluminum pan collapse, spilling turkey grease in the over and creating a grease fire in the kitchen. Fortunately, no damage was done (except for a 3 hour clean out on the oven) which was amazing. My Dad and I were the only two in the kitchen and I was mesmerized by the 4 foot flames shooting out of my oven. It was amazing that my Dad wasn't injured. We did get to enjoy Christmas dinner and turkey until I went down to the basement to discover sewage spewing out from the pipes. What a holiday surprise! Matt and my brother-in-law John got to spend the day after Christmas snaking the line to clear the blockage. It was also the day after Christmas that I discovered that the 3-month old hard drive on my laptop was fried taking with it the newsletter I design for Newcomers. The newsletter I was supposed to drop off at the printers that day. Later in the week, Matt, John and Chloe went out for a drive in the Porsche and Matt was pulled over by a local policeman for speeding. He came home with a ticket for failure to possess a copy of his driver's license (which was a lucky break). There were a few other incidences, but they deserve posts all unto themselves.

As for the holiday itself, it was nice. Santa brought Chloe all that she wanted and more. Our attempt at a smaller, cheaper Christmas failed (mostly thanks to BeBe and the vast quantities of presents she had shipped to our house). Eventhough Chloe requested and got an i-Pod and a guitar, the biggest hit was the keyboard/microphone combo that she got from BeBe and PaPaw.

During the visit and in between the annoyances we were able to get in trips to the NY Botanical Gardens train show, NYC, a visit to my favorite spa in the city, and a food tour of Chelsea Market which we all loved so much.

Now that the holidays are over, my laptop is back, the ticket is paid, the pipes and basement are clean and working, we are settling back in and getting back into the swing of things.
 
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