Thursday, August 19, 2010

New Roommates

Maybe it has something to do with me being an only child. I can't say that I ever thought much about having a brother or sister while growing up. But maybe the fact that I didn't have that experience is what allows me to romanticize about how fulfilling the bond can be (in theory at least) between siblings... So with that, V and I have been discussing the prospect of Jasmine Olivia and Justin Alexander sharing a room for as long as I can remember. We haven't done any reading on it (surprise surprise) but given the obvious difference in gender we're figuring that our window of opportunity is small. At some point they'll need separate rooms... but for as long as we can, we kinda felt like we wanted to do all we could to foster a great relationship between the two of them... and sharing a room just seems like a natural part of that.

With the prospect of us moving to a new house fading but still looming, we've done a lot of reconfiguring lately; figuring we'd downsize our belongings whether we moved or not. So gone is the upstairs office furniture, as we try to get a feel for what 3 bedrooms would feel like... (and doing so has reminded us that we have a lot more space than we need... which is a story for a whole different blog entry)... and gone is about 25% of the clutter, and reorganized is the other 75% of the house (ok... 65%... we still have about 10% to go). With all of that changing and rearranging, V figured it was finally time to pull the trigger on the room sharing experiment. And so whammo; I came home from work to find a new double-occupancy kid room and a newly badged playroom (i.e., Justin's old room which now houses every toy in the house). V and I are both digging the idea of a playroom and the logistics that it brings. For one, toys are (mostly) off limits in the rest of the house... which equates to a whole lot less cleaning up since they only have one room to demolish. We're also hoping that it lessens their need to follow us around the house and play in our shadows, given that they have a centralized place of their own to hang out with their belongings... We'll see.

As tonight is the first night of our latest crazy experiment; I am happy to report that both of our wild and crazy bunk mates read, played, and fell asleep without a hitch. So the transition (at least for now) seems like a success.... but then again... the night is still young. And the moon is full. (*)

Anything can happen.

[okay... so the moon is not really full tonight... but it sounded good]

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Free Tutoring

So here's the deal with the bike. We wanted to buy Justin a bike back in '09, just after he turned two years old. But we talked ourselves out of it figuring that we'd wait until Christmas. Then winter came and looked like this... and so we figured we may as well wait until his Birthday. Well... his birthday came and we had the revelation that I'd be gone for a good part of the summer. With that, V convinced me that teaching him to ride his bike was a father-son moment that I wouldn't want to miss. So we waited again. However, we then had the additional dilemma of finding a bike big enough for a three year old but simple enough for him to learn on since we had bypassed the big wheel phase (which I now know is helpful for teaching kids how to pedal).

And so here we were in late July... two kids... no bike... and two indecisive parents. But the wait is over, as we are now a 3 bike household (with one more bike on the way for mommy). And we're happy to say that Justin is doing great on the Radio Flyer and probably about ready to move to his training wheel bike. Now if we can just get him to figure out the steering thing. But in the meantime, given that he has perfected his own pedaling riding skills ages ago (i.e., sometime last week)... Justin felt it was time to spread the love and share his expertise. Go Jasmine Go.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

How We Roll

What minivan? We rollin' in my Swagger Wagon.

Friday, August 13, 2010

New Footprints

As if an 80% education discount on the Adobe Creative Suite wasn't sweet enough (that's a ridiculous $1600 off), Adobe also threw in a free trial month to the video tutorial website Long story short, I finished my trial month and shelled out $25 more for another 1-month subscription. Love the website. Lynda's a genius. I just wish it was my idea.

Anyway, aside from the 20 hours I probably logged on the website this summer relearning Microsoft Access for my research project, I probably spent another dozen on there getting up to speed on the various Adobe applications (mostly Dreamweaver, Flash, and Photoshop). Hey... some people do crossword puzzles to stimulate the brain... but the true-to-form introverted over-the-top geeks? We lay in bed on Friday nights watching video tutorials for web programming.

Anyway... the moral of the story is that I am happy to announce that is back up and running. With only one entry since last August, I think it's safe to say that the familyfootprints website has pretty much been shut down for a year. But one good side effect of watching all of those tutorials is that I learned how to automate the gallery creation process... cutting my work-time by about 90%... which means I shouldn't fall behind nearly as much.

And so our photo archive (though it's still a work in progress) has been resuscitated and we are officially back on track with documenting all of life's fleeting moments. Over the next few weeks I'll continue getting the galleries up-to-date; as well as reposted the entries from 2003 to 2009. In the meantime, January through April are up and running. Here's the link again. Enjoy.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Mommy on the Move

Somebody get that woman a water bottle. As of this morning, mommy ran our usual 3-mile loop nonstop and has now officially joined the 5k club. Congratulations mommy! We are all very proud of you. And you should be doggone delighted with yourself as well. Your diligence with your workout routine lately has been inspiring.

Now go catch your breath and buy yourself some new sneakers. I think I smell an 8K around the corner.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Tough Cookie

Mommy sez:

Here's a quote from Babycenter that provides some insight as to why Jasmine be dissing me sometimes! "Don't be surprised if your toddler already seems to treat you and your spouse differently. Whichever parent he spends the most time with will be the one he demands more of and is hardest on. If Mom's around more, Dad will be treated like someone special, and vice versa. While this may make one of you feel jealous, know that it's normal and is your child's way of testing out his relationship with each of you. Family dynamics, and your child's shifting loyalties, will be more and more evident during the next few months as he becomes increasingly independent."

Daddy sez:

Increasingly independent? If she gets any more independent she'll have to move out and get a job. But hey... that's our little girl. Miss Jasmine "Don't hold my hand... I got this" Olivia Reyes. Incredible.

Sunday, August 1, 2010


After not posting anything for 3 weeks, I have to say that it is awfully tempting to try to make up for it in one long post. When I think about everything that has changed, 3 weeks seems like a lifetime. Justin & Jasmine's intellectual growth has been incredible, and there is so much to talk about there all by itself. Every 30 minutes is a milestone with these two. Watching them grow continues to be incredible.

As far as other topics go, there's also V s weeklong trip to South Carolina with the kids, the completion of my two research projects, the prospect of us moving in the next 2 to 3 weeks, and I'm sure a host of other things that I can't even think of now. But for now, I'll spare you the details of it all and simply figure that whatever is worth talking about will surface on its own in due time. In the meantime, here are a few photos taken yesterday at Towne Point Park here in Norfolk. Enjoy.