Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bouncy Girl

The first half hour we were here at Kris' Jamie bounced on the trampoline. I was a bit concerned and the concern was warranted. She didn't understand the concept of staying in the middle and konked her head on the side.

I am such a bad mommy...I didn't catch her and she has now has a double goose egg on her noggin.

Tree Hugger

My cousin Kristina wanted to make sure we saw all the cool sites at this Metro Park we went to, among them the trees she carved her Nephew's name and another tree near by where she carved Bill and her names after seeing this tree with all of the carvings. Well there was something new by the tree, this sign showing how it hurts a tree to get carved.
Poor Tree!

It's cold up here in the North!

Under the Pond in the 'Pond Room'

Family rendition of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
in Ampitheatre in Michigan Metro Park

I am sitting here under blankets on my cousins couch while my family and hers still drowse away this chilly Michigan morning. It is only supposed to go up to 65 or so today and I bet it is still in the 50's. She has all the windows open which makes a cozy sleeping environment. I slept in socks, jammas and a hoody!
Yesterday we swam in the lake she lives at (although it wasn't hot, it barely hit 75 degrees) with a friend of Kris' and her granddaughter. Jamie had the chance to play with another child which is a highpoint for her, and we just lazed on the rafts, til it started sprinkling. With that weather change, the temperature seemed to drop about 10 degrees or so...
We went to a very nice Metro Park near her home that had wide open spaces with lots of wildflowers and rattlesnake warning signs. (We saw no actual snakes, it was probably too cool for them- though Jamie asked repeatedly 'where are the snakes Mommy') This park also had a very cool thing, a 'Pond room'. They have a tunnel built under the pond with a room where you can view the fish and plants. Very unique and fascinating.
The park also had a small ampitheatre, where when you stood in the middle and orated or sang it would amplify very impressively. We took the opportunity to ham it up.

We have been having a great time, but our time in Michigan is coming to a close. We will be leaving tomorrow for Lancaster Pennsyvania, for a side trip for my dear husband to see yet another presidential gravesite. Yes, that is his ambition to see all of the gravesites in his lifetime.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Lazing by the Lake instead of going to Hell

Mike and Jamie are both napping. We had plans to go to Hell today, yes there is a 'Hell' Michigan! They have a Ice cream shop called Screams that supposedely celebrates Halloween every day, the employees wear costumes and masks and they have Halloween items for sale. Well if you know my Jamie you know that Halloween is among her favorite holidays. We have been having behavior issues at bedtime here at Leisure Days (the name of this lakeside cottage we rented for the week)

Anyway to combat the bedtime tantrums I suggested we try reward rather than punish or use threats. So last night we told her if she behaved well at bedtime and went to sleep we would take her to a surprise after we saw Grandpa for lunch.

It worked~ the child went to bed with relatively no fuss. Good thing too as we need her to behave better for when we are staying with others or in a one room hotel. Anyway after the visit with Grandpa at the pub for lunch we realized we didn't bring the map. And despite what they say about the path being paved with good intentions we just didn't want to try it without the map. (We have a GPS system but it didnt recognize the town Hell for some reason).

So we came back to the cottage and Mike promptly fell asleep on the couch. Jamie was quietly playing with a game so I didnt rock the boat. When Jamie noticed her dad asleep she started crawling on him so I sent him off to bed to nap. She announced she needed a nap too, so here I sit alone in delicious almost silence. I'm out by the water under a shade tree with the wind breezing and the birds tweeting and an occasionaly boat buzzing by.

This is heaven.

Sometimes I can slip into the role of the scullery maid

Even on vacation, what with this tremendously beautiful kitchen at this cottage, I can't seem to keep it clean. We are constant eaters and drinkers it seems and I am not sure I like this granite surface. For one thing it is extremely hard, it feels if I put something down on it too quickly it will shatter. For another you can't see the puddles, and you end up putting something like the cardboard box of sugar in it...
Anyway, I find myself polishing and rearranging constantly. This morning I just asked Mike if he would take a turn. Of course he did, he is such a good guy.

Swimming Fun On A Perfect Day

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Vacation Memories

My stepsis Shari and stepmom Char
Jamie and Cousin Morgan
Jamie had a blast over at Shari's house yesterday. Shari and Jeff have 6 kids and though they are all older it was so much fun! Of course Jamie is already asking to go back out there again. They have a pool and Jamie barely came out all day, her fingers were completely pruned up.
I had to drag her kicking and almost screaming out of there.
Not sure what we are doing today. My inclination is stay here - the lake is so nice as there is a bit of a breeze and it will only be going up to 80 or so today.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Do you ever buy older pc games at thrift stores?

Or Garage sales? I thought i was so smart picking up a bunch of these for a dollar each for both Jamie and us. Then Mike told me they wouldnt work on Vista... Not so kemosabe....there are some articles on the web instructing how to adjust your settings in order to do so.

I will take them up north for idle times since we are bringing all 3 laptops. I know - we are pretty geeky.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

So do these photos look worth it?

So we got our 7 Best Buy gift cards from our credit card usage, and went to shop for the camera - the Canon Rebel- on Saturday morning. Ever shop for something like that with a 3 yr old? Next time we will call Grandma or a friend to watch her as it was EXTREMELY stressful. I have never wanted to duct tape her mouth so badly. It took almost 2 hours to purchase our camera, and a cell phone for my mom.

The camera was packaged as a kit with the 18-55 lens (which has image stabilization) another lens which didn't have it that was 70-200 and a case. Well when we were talking and comparing with the Nikon we got sold on that Image stabilization and asked about upgrading to the better lens 55-300 with image stabilization. It was a lens that was $150 more than the 2nd kit lens, and they said we could upgrade for only $50 additional. So for $779 we got the body, and both image stablized lens and a case. But they were out of the 2nd lens! So they will mail it to us...meanwhile as they were writing up the bill I was trying to occupy Jamie and the guys figured the invoice wrong. I couldn't tell how far it was wrong, but I knew they charged our credit card too much. The manager took the invoice to the back and refigured it and gave us a credit of $100 on our card. When I refigured it later he really should have only given us $75 credit so we ended up with a great deal - for only $25 over the $729 price or $754!

I feel happy with the price, now we will see about the photos. Here are the first few photos, Jamie was napping, so I took one of Mike and one of the Truman and Minnie napping. Then I couldn't resist and took a few of Jamie napping. Heehee I woke her up with the door and she stuck those fingers back in, and they fell out by the 6th photo taken.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Getting ready for Lake Life

We are getting pretty excited. Michigan lake water could be pretty chilly though, the temperatures have been only in the low seventies and lows in the low fifties. As it has been in the 90's all week here (already!) that sounds pretty good to us. What doesn't sound so good is 60 degree lake water temperature. Hopefully the lake we are staying on is small enough or shallow enough that it is at least 70 degrees. I can't stomach anything colder. I know Jamie will want to get in despite the chill so I am praying for a warm up to heat up that lake water!

silly girl

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Hard working week around the house

This house really is falling apart!

So yesterday we were trying to put the house back together after having the porch redone, shoot I should have taken before and after photos! Anyway Mike was putting all the stuff back out there, and realized our pressure washer was gone! So he called our handyman who said no, he didnt do anything with it...Guess someone saw it out on the porch and snatched it.

In more fun house rehab news, the sink plugged up so we had the plumber out on Saturday morning. Good thing I am an avid couponer, I had one for Sink unplug for $69 even on Saturdays or sundays. The plumber had to get on the roof and fight the roofers for access to clean out that mess. Normally the bill would be $89, so we will continue to use that plumber as he was much more economical than who we used to use. Econorooter for you locals - they don't take plastic, but they charge the same whether it's a weekend or weekday, and my plumbing problems always occur Friday night it seems.

I just sent Mike and Jamie to church by theirselves as I am in a cleaning jag. They don't come along all that often so I need to take advantage of it. Since the rugs are gone I am taking this opportunity to clean the wood floors - thourougly. I mean I am moving everything, and dusting and sweeping everywhere and doing the edges and bad spots on my hands and knees.

While doing this I am trying to find some music/cable channel to keep me occupied and moving and it appears that all of our High Def channels have gone kaput. Geesh it just never ends does it? Guess I will take a longer break and call the cable company. So much for my uninterupted cleaning time!

On a brighter note, despite all the dust I am kicking up I haven't coughed but one time today. Every day this week I have had long coughing spasms - sometimes at work at my desk, and a few times while face to face with my customers. This can't continue!!

Yesterday I went to the Dr for the 2nd time in a week, this time for a physical. He took me off the blood pressure meds that weren't working anyway and put me on something stronger, I have also kicked up to the stronger Advil, and he has me taking a Prilosec every day. Just in case reflux is causing the spasms. I don't know, but something seems better today. Yay!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Lots of work being done around here but not by us. We hired our handyman to spruce up the screened porch he rebuilt, he had to rescreen the top, pressure wash everything and repaint. It looks terrific except all of the stuff is still in the garage and elsewhere. Then today we had the roof started as it was time for a new roof on this house. (we reroofed the house we have at the beach as a rental last summer). Anyway the guys tore off alot from the roof today and then we had torrential downpours about 5pm. Mike called me at work to say there was a waterfall in our living room. He couldnt figure out where the pails and large bins were so I came right home. What a mess. The roofing guys came back and tarped it but it rained a bit later and it is still dripping down off the beam in the center of the living room. So we have four buckets and a cooler running down the width of our living room, all on a bed of tarp. Of course it is supposed to rain tomorrow as well.