Monday, March 31, 2008
Andrew decorated Easter eggs for the first time this Easter. We let him do everything, from putting the eggs in the cups, to stirring them up, to removing the eggs from the cups to give to Mommy. He was so cute because he would kiss each egg before he put it into the dyed water.
He loved to use the bubble-wand-looking-thing to stir the eggs up and did a great job of removing the eggs from the cups. He did get Incredible Hulk hand and several drops of dye on his face and forehead, but Daddy scrubbed it right off in the tubby. He was happy to be able to put Pooh stickers on them the next day for the finishing touches. He even helped to wash the dishes afterwards!!! What a helper boy.
On Easter morning we got up and Andrew found his Easter basket sitting at his table and chairs. He liked opening the presents in between bites of breakfast. His favorite gift was this “ready, set, go” car launcher that ejects like a switchblade. After the basket we went around the house to find the 12 Easter eggs that were hidden. He loves to look for things, but thinking to search inside something else is really beyond him at this point. Mommy and Daddy had to give some powerful suggestions! He was psyched because the Easter bunny had put yogurt raisins (Andrew's favorite) and Goldfish starfish into the eggs that were hidden. Mommy and Daddy had so much fun watching Andrew and speculating about his excitement next year.
This year we went to Grammy & Grampa’s for Easter. Andrew was dressed in a striped button-down shirt to match Daddy.
The highlight of Easter was decorating these cupcakes that Mommy had brought. She put frosting on an egg cupcake and put it on Andrew's plate. He couldn’t resist, he had to just dig right in. At first he didn’t want to get the frosting goo on his hands so he just sat there with the cupcake hanging from his mouth until his saliva made its way through the delicious treat. After the initial dose of sugar he had tons of fun dumping the sprinkles from the Dixie cups onto the cupcake over and over again.
He also got to participate in the George family Easter tradition of using a hard boiled egg to “bang” against your opponent to try to break the end of their egg. Andrew had great fun doing this, though Mommy wasn’t too sure if teaching him to crack eggs was such a brilliant idea!!!
Sunday, March 30, 2008
It was that time of the pregnancy again: BELLYCASTING! That’s right, after doing Tiffany’s belly cast for Andrew only a few short years ago, it was time to make the trek again - only this time with a new baby!
We embarked on our belly casting journey on Wednesday afternoon when I got out of work. After cutting all of the gauze strips into belly and boob size pieces, we were on our way. With Andrew sleeping like a little angel upstairs, Tiffany and I went into the laundry room to get this sucker started. We put down the drop cloth, stripped Tiffany down, and put on our latex gloves.
Step one of the hilarious belly casting experience was to apply oil (no, not taint rub) all over Tiffany’s “chosen” belly casting parts. Surely we are the best of friends, but I let her apply the oil to her boobsicles while I lathered up her belly! After making my poor sister look like a very round slip and slide, it was time to apply the gauze. For those of you who have never done a belly cast before, I will notify you that it is a VERY rapid activity. We had approximately seventy-five cut pieces of gauze to apply in about ten minutes or so, so we had our game faces on.
To do the actual belly cast, you dip each piece of gauze into a bucket of water, remove all excess water by slipping it through your fingers, and you smooth it onto Tiffany’s belly. Fortunately Tiffany wasn’t afraid to get her hands a little dirty as I was able to pass her the first few pieces to apply to her chest so she wasn’t just flopping in the breeze while construction workers next door were probably trying to sneak a peek!
Layer after layer we applied the gauze, first going horizontally, then vertically, then horizontally again for stability. Unfortunately, with about twenty or so pieces of gauze left, the belly cast began to dry so quickly that Tiffany could feel it lifting off her body from the sides. The only solution to get it to stop releasing was to stop laughing, but do you think we could possibly do that?! OF COURSE NOT. Every single chance I had to act like an idiot or tell a stupid joke, I seized the opportunity (K.J. would have been so proud). And after one HILARIOUS joke by Tiffany, the belly cast was only hanging on by the top part of her belly; I thought I was going to pee myself I was laughing so hard! Quickly we finished up applying all the pieces to Tiffany’s big ‘ol belly and I was a mess! Tiffany had to stay standing for about five minutes before the cast completely fell off, meanwhile I washed up and try to clean a little of the mess we made.
Thank goodness Tiffany was paying attention when the belly cast finally released, because she was able to just catch it in her hands. With a simple yell of “SISTER,” I went into the back room, grabbed the belly cast from Tiffany and placed it on the floor. While the cast did come out much better than the first, Tiffany was a little disappointed at the size of the belly! When comparing it to her belly with Andrew, this one is quite a bit smaller and we did this one about two weeks farther along - Ba-hum-bug!
So needless to say, I am now a belly casting pro. That’s not to say I’d rub just anyone down with oil and make them look like a mummy, but it definitely has been a wonderful bonding experience for Tiffany and me. The next step is to wait for our little bundle of joy to arrive so we can put him or her into the belly cast and take some adorable pictures like we did with Andrew. I’m just so darn happy to be an Aunt AGAIN. Oh, and good luck Little George - Andrew and Anna are tough acts to follow J
Yesterday was a great day on many, many levels. The day started with us buying a new Xterra, then Angie, Anna and I went to lunch at Sunset Cantina in Boston (one of my all-time favorite places to go) and we then returned home. The best part of the day, however, was when Meme and Papa came down to visit Anna and about 15 minutes into their visit, I discovered Anna officially cut her first tooth.
I'm assuming the tooth came through at some point during the night, but we didn't notice it until about 4 p.m. It was cool Anna hit the milestone, but it was even better because my parents were here to be as surprised as we were.
People often tell horror stories of when their child cuts their first tooth, but Anna never really reacted, other than excessive drooling. If you know Anna, "excessive drooling" is a wet experience...it's like going over Mike & Candy's house and having their dogs slobber all over you...you love it, but it's still kind of gross at the same time.
Anyway, my parents brought down this pasta sampler that they got through work and we had a great night of trying out about 10 different types of raviolis, canolis and unique filled pastas. It was quite a treat and a lot better than probably all of us expected.
Anna was the most polite baby ever. Somehow she seems to have this innate sense of how to properly act at all times. She was awake when Meme and Papa got here, then she took a nap right as we were about ready to eat and she woke up right when we got done eating. It was ideal to maximize the amount of time that Anna could spend with Meme and Papa and maximize the amount of time that Angie and I could spend with them too.
As always, it was a blast to see my folks...for those of you who don't know them, they're definitely the coolest people you'll ever meet. And also as always, the day revolved around family, food and beer...the perfect trio if you ask me.
Friday, March 28, 2008
Sugar, Sweet N Low or Splenda? It's a decision millions of Americans make on a daily basis. Well, Anna was faced with that decision tonight and she made the best health-conscious decision that you could expect out of a five-month-old.
Angie, Anna and I went out to dinner at T.G.I. Friday's tonight at the Solomon Pond Mall. Before our food came, Anna was sitting on my lap, playing with anything and everything she could get her hands on when Angie decided to pose the sweetener question to Anna.
Ang placed one packet of Sugar, one packet of Sweet N Low and one packet of Splenda in front of Anna on the table. As you can see in the photo above, Anna dove in with her right hand. She struggled for a little while before coming up with the little yellow packet of Slenda.
Her motor skills are developing at a rapid rate and it's actually pretty cool to see her be able to do such simple tasks as pick things up. She has one of two immediate reactions when she picks something up...1) put it in her mouth or 2) shake it as hard as she can to see if it rattles.
Anna did the latter, shaking the small packet to see if it made any noise. It didn't, but she was still happy. Actually, everyone would've been happy to watch the whole scene unfold.
Aunt Kate would be happy that Anna made the healthy decision and chose Splenda. Andrew would be happy that Anna chose his favorite color, yellow. Angie and I were happy that she didn't just shove it into her mouth.
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Unfortunately the secret is out and we have Jose Canseco to thank. Anna has been linked to performance-enhancing drugs in Canseco's new book "Vindicated," which hits stores Friday.
I was a little skeptical of the legitimacy of claims made by the 1988 MLB MVP, but video evidence has surfaced that backs his words that Anna used steroids within the last two months.
In the video below, which makes its world debut here on TheCardinalBlog.com, you can see Anna's "roid rage" gets the best of her as she attempts to destroy the mobile attached to her swing.
When contacted late Thursday night, Anna and her representatives had no comment.
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
I woke up early this morning to watch the Red Sox season opener, but Anna couldn't bring herself to wake up until about 7:45 a.m. The 6:05 first pitch proved to be too early even for Anna, who had been eagerly awaiting her first-ever opening day.
Once Anna woke up, I gave her a bottle, put the game on the radio, gave her a bath and got her geared up in her Dice K pink Red Sox t-shirt. By the time we returned downstairs to watch the game, Dice K had already been pulled, so his poor start had nothing to do with her wearing his shirt.
Anna enjoyed about an inning and a half before passing out on the couch...as you can see above. Also, I had to re-post this picture of Anna (see left) from the first time she wore her Dice K t-shirt from Vicky back on October 29, 2007, when she was just 24 days old. I can't believe how big she is already.
Anyway, it's apparent that Anna is somewhat of a good luck charm for Manny Ramirez though. The night she was born he hit a walk-off homerun to win Game 2 of the ALDS versus the Angels and he just ripped a two-run double in the top of the 10th to give the Sox the 6-4 lead. Coincidence? I think not.
As you all probably know by now, Angie and I are big fans of bringing Anna anywhere and everywhere we go, but I'm torn on what to do with her when it comes to going to her first Red Sox game. I know that I'll be going to quite a few games this year, like usual, but I'm just not sure if Fenway would be a good idea for her just yet.
We might bring her to one game just so we can say that she went to a game this season. It would be such a project to get her there though with all her gear and whatnot and, in case you didn't realize it, the seats at Fenway aren't too spacious. So, it would probably be a bad experience for all of us all around.
When I went to Game 2 of the World Series last year with Adam, I actually contemplated bringing Anna in just to get a picture with her near the field and then bringing her back out for Angie to take home. I opted against it, which was probably a good call since it was a mob scene down in Kenmore Square, but it would have been cool to get that photo of her.
So, we'll have to see what happens this season, but regardless Anna will be "watching" the Sox all season long at home...but the 6:05 a.m. starts are tough.
Monday, March 24, 2008
Anna is officially a city girl. On Saturday, she experienced her first real day out in the big city. Sure, Anna's gone into Boston with us for basketball games at Northeastern and BU, but never really out and about.
Angie's friends Jamie and Jenn were celebrating their 30th birthdays on Saturday night, so Anna and I decided to tag along to the surprise party.
The day started off by picking up Aunt Missy in Natick and then heading into the city. Angie and Missy got a hotel room at the Hyatt, so the four of us went there to check-in and catch some of the NCAA tourney action. Anna really took advantage of the nice bed with all the pillows (pictured right).
When it was time for the party, we bundled Anna up in her stroller and walked to DJ's at The Garden, a new pub on Friend Street right near the FleetCenter...actually where Hooters used to be.
Anna loved the sights of the city and didn't seem to be bothered that it was kind of chilly. Once we got to DJ's, Anna was in her glory. They probably have 15-20 HDTVs all over the place, so pretty much no matter where she looked she was able to see a TV.
There were about 25 people or so that showed up for the party and the place was a little on the loud side, but Anna appeared to be unphased. She was her happy, smiley self. She was able to eat just fine and even fell asleep in her stroller.
When it was her bedtime, Anna and I headed back to Hudson, leaving Ang to really enjoy a night out with her friends.
On the walk back to the car, Anna was all bundled up again, with covers pulled over her head in the stroller. At one point, I stopped just to check on her to make sure she was OK and I pulled the covers down to see a smiling baby...she seemed to enjoy the walk in the stroller on the brick and cobblestone streets and sidewalks of Boston.
It was the first of many trips into Boston for Anna, so we were so glad that everything went so well and Anna appeared to really enjoy herself.
Friday, March 21, 2008
12:04 pm: We survived day one of the NCAA tourney and the running blog is back for day two. Scott is currently here along with Sammy and Anna. We should have quite a few more people stopping by today than yesterday, so the blog should have a little more material than Fusta singing Pat Benatar.
12:24 pm: Cassani and Glenn just showed up...Glenn brought a 12-pack of Coke...what a wimp.
12:38 pm: Marissa just showed up too.
2:04 pm: Just finished lunch. Drake needs to get their act together. Miami, Tennessee and Gonzaga are in OK shape. Davidson is going to fade away (I hope).
3:12 pm: WOW! Western Kentucky three ball to win it. A great session of games. I had Drake winning, but I'll take a buzzer-beater over a bracket pick anyway...unless it would happen to involve my Huskies.
In unrelated news, Glenn just dropped the bomb on me that him and Kendra are engaged! What a great series of events.
3:18 pm: Oh yeah, Glenn wanted me to make public that he is now drinking beer...he took his skirt off.
3:24 pm: This youtube video has to be blogged. Apparently this kid used to work with Cassani. Two things to take note of...the couple in the corner making out and the kids superb form during the cannonball.
3:58 pm: America East Champion UMBC gave Georgetown a run early, but the Hoyas are flexing their Big East muscles. With a guy like Jay Greene in the backcourt (arguably the whitest guy in the tourney), it's a miracle that they even gave G'town a run early.
I have UConn winning, but I would love to see them lose. Glad to see Texas is throttling Austin Peay, since I have the Longhorns winning Bracket #2.
6:24 pm: The live tourney blog has officially derailed...as if you couldn't tell. Mike Cook just showed up and we're in the midst of a Guitar Hero tourney, so things are out of hand. I blame my lack of posts on Glenn though...well him and the Bud Lights.
Thursday, March 20, 2008
12:20 pm: Let the games begin!
12:22 pm: Not even 20 seconds into the first game of the 2008 NCAA Tournament and Anna throws up on me. Seriously, I can't make this sh*t up. Scott is here as my witness. Not a good way to start the tourney.
12:48 pm: I have Xavier winning three games in both of my brackets, including beating Duke, and the Musketeers aren't looking good right now versus Georgia. I would obviously love to win the pool that I'm in, but a 14-seed beating a three-seed would be great.
12:52 pm: Angie and Sammy just got home. Sammy had to get teeth pulled today at the dentist, so she's home for the rest of the day and then off tomorrow for Good Friday.
1:05 pm: Temple is also losing to Michigan State. I have this game split in the two brackets that I've done. I'm not quite sure why I put so much stock into the A-10. I just thought their guard play would come up huge in the tourney. Let's hope Xavier and Temple can turn it around in the second half.
1:16 pm: One of my pet peeves has to be when people mispronounce things. How do you say "Xavier"? If you are saying EX-avier, then you're an idiot. If you say Zavier, then you are correct.
1:21 pm: Scott and Angie have both headed back to work temporarily, Sammy's up in her room watching something other than the NCAA tourney and Anna's in her exersaucer...quite a ripper. I'm happy though...games in HD on my TV and March Madness On Demand on my laptop...life is good.
1:30 pm: Alternating possession sucks. Why don't they just throw the ball up for a real "jump ball"? They need to change this rule for college basketball...only for the men though. No need to change it for the women since there are about a dozen jump balls a game in a mid-major women's basketball game. Take my word for it...I've seen more than my share of women's hoops.
1:35 pm: I just checked my PackNetwork.com email account and Bose (Bruce Bosley, Vermont SID) sent me a youtube link to TJ Sorrentine's three-pointer versus Syracuse in 2005. Sorrentine wasn't the best America East player that I've ever seen play...probably not even in the top 10...but he has to have most testicular fortitude that I've ever seen on the basketball court. What on earth would possess him to pull up from 35 feet in the midst of the biggest moment in the history of the state of Vermont? Unbelievable.
There are certain moments in sports that you will never forget where you were. When Sorrentine buried that three, I let out a joyful yelp in the media room at West Virginia's WVU Coliseum. I was in Morgantown for the thrilling Women's NIT game between Maine and the Mountaineers. God my life is pathetic.
2:13 pm: Just saw Adam Hunger in D.C. at the Georgia-Xavier game. Adam is a photographer...we went to Northeastern together. That kid is everywhere. Xavier just went up by seven...please hold on!
2:29 pm: It's such a small world. I was just thinking and there are quite a few people in this year's tourney that have some legit Northeastern or America East ties. For instance, Frank Martin, Kansas State Head Coach...Frank was an assistant coach at Northeastern while I was traveling with the team. He is one of the hardest working, loyal and dedicated men I have ever met. He's definitely a relatively normal guy in a big-time job. I love this crazy Cuban and really hope he can win a few games.
2:40 pm: Xavier buckled down and decided to actually play a little D in the second half versus Georgia. The Musketeers came back and won, 73-61, thus keeping my perfect bracket alive for one game.
2:59 pm: You know it's NCAA tourney time because I just busted out the highlighters for my brackets. The only time I EVER use highlighters is during the tourney. Don't worry, I didn't pull a Digger Phelps and coordinate my shirt and tie with my highlighter...that's so retarded.
3:37 pm: UNLV 31, Kent State 10 at the half. Are you kidding me? Only 10 points. That is pathetic. Somewhere Dennis Wolff is smiling.
3:53 pm: Biggest moment of the day thus far actually had nothing to do with basketball. Anna just successfully fed herself an entire bottle. I had to stop her about three-quarters of the way through and sit her up to burp and then she got right back at it. That was definitely a Pontiac Game-Changing Performance.
3:57 pm: OK, so I have two brackets. Bracket #1 is what I truly think will happen and Bracket #2 is my "upset special" bracket. So far I am 3-0 in Bracket #1 and 2-1 in Bracket #2.
4:34 pm: Northeastern tie: Ian McCaw, Baylor Athletic Director...Ian was AD at NU when I was in college. He has done an amazing job rebuilding their men's basketball program after they had one player shoot and kill another...ridiculous story. While I was working at the 2005 Women's Final Four in Indy, Baylor actually won the title. It was cool to see Ian basking in the glory of a national title...unfortunately, something he never would've accomplished at NU.
6:23 pm: Since someone was interested...we're still alive over here, just breaking for dinner. Fusta just showed up too. We're watching the Cornell-Stanford game, hoping for the unimaginable whiteout...we'd accept one team, but both would be unprecedented.
6:54 pm: Well the Cornell-Stanford game was a bore, but at least we just got the Cornell whiteout. Classic! Sorry for the lack of posts during that game...we had my laptop hooked up to the big screen and I didn't want to be updating the blog during the game. Anyway, the guacamole is great, but it's waaayy too early for the Fromunda cheese to make an appearance.
7:19 pm: I'm definitely fired up for this K State-USC game, but Beasley just picked up his second foul, which sucks. I'm sure Frank will rally the troops and get the Wildcats back on track. USC looks sloppy early.
8:05 pm: K-State's looking good in the first half. Frank did a great job of managing Beasley's foul trouble. Not surprising, the Wildcats are kicking butt in the hustle stats...a staple of a Frank Martin team. Also, Belmont is giving Duke a game. I would love for the Dukies to lose to a 15 seed.
In unrelated news, Fusta is singing Pat Benatar songs...loudly. What a great day.
9:09 pm: I should've taken the over on the number of Vince Gill shots during the Duke-Belmont game.
9:20 pm: Coming out of a timeout with the game on the line and Belmont tries to throw an alley-oop? Are you kidding me? What the hell was the in-bounder thinking? The guy in the lane (#40) totally didn't hit his screen on #2's defender...don't throw the pass. They're killing me. DUCK FUKE!
9:27 pm: Synonyms...BYU & Whiteout.
10:25 pm: America East tie: Tommy Herrion, Pittsburgh Assistant Coach...Tommy was a color analyst for all AETV games last year. His brother, Bill, is also the coach at UNH. Tommy used to coach at the College of Charleston.
10:27 pm: Fusta's asleep on the couch...snoring away. Despite having a flawless bracket still, his performance today has been less than stellar as this is his second nap of the day and he got here at 6 p.m. Can you say "soft"?
10:32 pm: As if 16 NCAA tourney games in one day wasn't enough, the Celtics are up four at Dallas with four to go right now. They're trying to complete the unheardof Texas sweep as they already beat Houston and San Antonio on this road trip. Not sure what the deal is but Northeastern's Jose Juan Barea isn't suited up tonight for the Mavs. He is looking dapper on the sideline in an ash gray suit though.
10:43 pm: The worst part of the NBA compared to college ball...the Celtics game still isn't over yet. Eleven minutes ago there was four minutes on the clock. Now the C's just called a timeout with 33.8 seconds left. Never ending.
10:46 pm: Ray Allen for three!
10:52 pm: OK, the C's sealed the win, completing the Texas sweep! Four minutes of game action took 20 minutes to complete...brutal. Back tourney action. (PS - I hate Reggie Miller)
12:34 am: I'm falling asleep on the couch, so that's the sign I need to go to bed. The running tourney blog will return tomorrow though!
I feel like I'm on that Staples commercial when the father is shopping for back-to-school supplies for his kids, while "It's the most wonderful time of the year" is playing in the background. Except, the kids aren't going back to school...instead, I'm taking back the NCAA tourney.
After spending four years at America East and four years as an SID at Northeastern, this is really the first time since the 1999 NCAA Tournament that I will truly be able to get back to the reason why I got into the business that I am in now and was in for eight years and that reason is my love for college basketball.
There really isn't a better sport in the world than college basketball and the labors of the season all culminate beginning today with the first round of tourney play. Having worked in college athletics for the past eight years, I have several ties to coaches, players, etc. that are playing in the NCAA tourney, so it's even more wonderful for me now.
My favorite sporting day of the year is Patriots' Day because of the Boston Marathon, the Sox game and the general drunken debauchery that takes place, but from today (Thursday) through Sunday, there isn't a better four-day stretch in all of sports.
I have invited a few people over for the games today and tomorrow and I plan on doing blog updates throughout the tourney. I know it's kind of Sports Guy-ish, so I'll give him credit for the idea, but it should still be interesting...he never has the guys over to watch the NCAA tourney AND a five-month old baby girl to watch...could get interesting.
Andrew was much more involved in Christmas this year. We woke up at our house Christmas morning, had breakfast with Meme, Papa, Aunt Kate, and Matt, then dove into presents.
His play kitchen from Santa was an instant hit and Andrew would have been happy to receive only that. Other presents were opened at home, but we didn’t press the issue with such a big day ahead.
Andrew opened his other presents from us over the course of the next week. Of those, his apron to match mine was probably his favorite.
After presents at home, we went to the Lake House to see Grammy and Grandpa. Andrew was most into eating Grammy’s delicious Chex Mix and a small (albeit NOISY) matchbox car.
He did warm up to his new chair and his new horse, Butterscotch. For those who do not know the story, we had seen this horse at BJ’s and Andrew absolutely fell in love with it. He just stood there and hugged it and hugged it. We didn’t even know at this point that it turned on, moved, ate a carrot, etc. The price tag scared us away, but once Grammy heard the story and remembered what a doll Andrew was at the Rochester Fair Petting Zoo, she knew he had to have it. He enjoys combing and feeding it each day. Daddy taught him how to get onto the floor and roll onto his back beneath the horse so that he can now turn the horse off and on by himself. It is so cute!
He also had fun playing with Aunt Val and Aunt Suzanne, and of course soon-to-be Uncle Brian.
After a nap at the Lake in Daddy’s old crib, Andrew and crew made their way to Meme and Papa’s house for even more presents. Andrew probably had his most fun here, for Sammy AND Papa were there to play, and cousin Anna was there to admire.
Uncle KJ and Aunt Angie ordered Andrew a tractor that exactly matches Papa’s and that has remained one of his favorite gifts. Andrew has a big tractor and a little tractor and he must play with both of them at the same time. If he finds the big one, he'll run around saying "yiddle, yiddle" until we find the small one. His friends love his tractors too! So far Mommy has taken the glue gun to the tractors no less than 4 times for minor and major repairs!
His zebra tent and associated camping gear from Meme and Papa were also a hit.
Papa also bought Andrew his own mini guitar. As you know from the Lassie video, Andrew loves when Papa plays his guitar. Andrew now likes to put his guitar strap around his head to “play” his guitar just like Papa. And you better believe that he needs a pick to play, even though his little guitar is stringless! And since yellow is his favorite color, he needs to use a yellow pick. Andrew picked out some picks for Papa's birthday back on January 30th and he was sure to include some yellow picks in the mix so that Papa always has an extra one for him. Andrew used to be scared to touch a real guitar, but lately he loves to take the pick from Pete's guitar and strum away while Daddy holds on to the strings. If Papa plays the guitar, then that is the coolest thing Andrew could ever do!
Meme and Papa had also ordered a table and chair set for Andrew, which we got after Christmas. Andrew thinks he is so cool sitting at his own table, in his own chair. He loves to sit in one chair and eat for a bit, then he gets up, moves everything to the other side of the table, and sits in the other chair. It is adorable. One of Andrew’s favorite new words is “cool” and he likes to tell me that his table and chairs are “cool".
We think he's cool!
On December 18th, 2007 Andrew got his first haircut.
His hair was getting quite long in the back and had grown completely over his ears (as you can see in the photo), so we decided to bite the bullet. It’s funny because clearly hair isn’t that big of a deal, but seeing the baby face that we’ve admired for so long transform into a “big boy face” with the snip of the scissors can truly melt your heart.
We decided to bring Andrew to the same place where Pete gets his hair cut. Pete went first while I held a curious Andrew on my lap. About midway through Pete’s new do, I asked Andrew if he wanted a turn and of course he signed “please”.
He went and sat on Daddy’s lap and actually enjoyed the full half-hour hair cut. The results, I’m sure you’ll agree, are adorable. By now he’s already had a second haircut and is nearly ready for a third!
Saturday, March 15, 2008
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday dear Auntie Sheila
Happy Birthday to you
Those of you who know my Aunt Sheila know why it's only fitting to start off this post by "singing" Happy Birthday. For those of you who do not know "Auntie", let me explain.
First off, Auntie is my father's oldest sister...as evidenced by her Class of '66 photo to the right (sorry I couldn't resist). But more importantly, Auntie is the Queen of Holidays, Birthdays and Gift Giving in general. She's the type of person that wraps presents by taping every last crease on a gift so it takes you forever to open them. She's the type of person that picks a theme for a gift and buys you everything known to man in that theme. If there was a professional league for celebrating holidays, Auntie Sheila would be Michael Jordan.
Growing up, Auntie would always make a huge to-do about our birthdays. Living in Maine and then Florida, it often made it tough for her to celebrate our birthdays with us in person, but that didn't stop her from going all out.
A day or two before our birthdays, we'd get a ridiculous care package in the mail from Auntie. But of course, we had to wait until our day to open it. When our birthday came, she would always call and sing Happy Birthday to us. If we weren't home, then sure enough we'd check the answering machine and there was Auntie's Happy Birthday rendition.
For the year's when we were fortunate enough to spend our birthdays with Auntie, we were in for an even better treat. Not only would we get her child-like joy, but also one of her famous birthday cakes. She is a pro cake decorator. Don't take my word for it though, just take a look at the photo to the right. For my Dad's 35th Birthday, Auntie's theme for my dad was Bud Light (I know, shocking). So, as you can see, she did up a cake that looked just like a Bud Light. Her gifts were always great, but the cake itself was always my favorite gift.
Anyway, Auntie's holiday joy didn't stop there though. It continued throughout the entire season concluding with her Super Bowl...Christmas.
When Auntie would walk in the door to spend Christmas with us, you could literally feel the holiday spirit come in with her. She'd get so excited for us and got us so fired up for the big day. She is the sole reason why our family started the insane tradition of getting up at the crack of dawn on Christmas morning to open our gifts.
Now, when I say crack of dawn, that's actually incorrect. Many years, "dawn" was still a few hours a way. Waking up at 4 a.m. on Christmas morning in those days was considered sleeping in...seriously.
It was crazy. It was insane. It was unhealthy. It was what we all loved about having Auntie at our house for Christmas. Auntie actually had to rotate her holiday schedule each year (one with the Cardinals, the next with the Lords) because we couldn't get enough of it.
So as you can see, saying Auntie Sheila is the Michael Jordan of celebrating holidays might actually be an understatement...if that's possible.
Happy 60th Birthday Auntie and thanks for always making our birthdays so special. We love you!
Thursday, March 13, 2008
It's been nearly two weeks since I learned of the passing of Ted and I've had plenty of time to laugh, cry and think about his life, his death and how he will forever be remembered.
Having someone so close to you and so young be taken from this earth will never make sense, so instead of focusing incessantly on his irrational death, I'm choosing to focus on keeping him alive through good memories and doing everything that I can to help Brandi, Logan and Faith any way that I can.
When I sit back and reflect on my memories of Ted, there are a lot of them. Quite a few from high school, but most of them from when we lived together in college for two years. From Ted's obsession to make "perfect" mac and cheese to eating dinners right off the stove out of the pot to rolling his ankle during every game of intramural basketball that we played together, Ted has been a part of many fun and hysterical memories from my time at Northeastern.
While all of those memories are very vivid, the memory of Ted that stands out the most is Spring Break 2000. Brandi was living down in Florida on an internship program and Ted planned to go do to see her during break. Moody and I wanted to spend Spring Break with Ted, so we concocted an amazing plan for the three of us. We'd turn Spring Break into an NBA road trip, which would conclude in Orlando so Ted could see Brandi. It was awesome.
I know most people take MLB road trips, but the three of us will be forever connected by our love affair with basketball and the Celtics, so we were psyched for the trip. There was one hiccup though...how would we get down there. Ted had his old van and Moody had his car, but neither vehicle was as reliable as my Ford Ranger. So, reliability won out over comfort and we elected to take my Ranger.
You might not think this is a big deal, but try putting two large men (Ted and I) in the front of a non-extended cab Ford Ranger and Moody in the middle (along with the stick shift) for a 24-hour voyage to Florida and you may change your mind. It was uncomfortable, it was awkward, it was insane...it was what made this trip so memorable.
From Ted drooling all over himself as he slept to Ted and I chain-smoking cigars with the windows rolled up while Moody slept, the time we spent in the truck was the best time of the trip. I swear I've never laughed so much.
Below is a photo from when we stopped in DC for a Wizards game. We took time to check out a few things, like the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Here we are standing in front of The Three Soldiers monument.
Anyway, I have countless memories from this trip and just the thought of the three of us piling into the Ranger and going from city to city makes me smile.
As I mentioned in a previous post, a college fund has been established for Logan and Faith. If you'd like to donate to The Ted Everidge Memorial Fund Ted please visit ForeverTed.com for complete details.
Also, Moody and I are in the middle of planning a benefit pub crawl of sorts going from Farmington to Boston and back. I'll post details here and on ForeverTed.com once they're available.
We'll never forget you Ted.
Thursday, March 6, 2008
Yesterday, Anna celebrated her five month birthday. It was nearly 60 degrees in Hudson, so I decided to take her for the official first walk.
I may have overdone it by bundling her up with a hooded sweatshirt AND a hat, along with two blankets, but I guess a baby can never be too warm.
She really seemed to love the outdoors. She was looking all around and "talking." We made two trips around the block and as we got a few hundred yards from our house, she had fallen fast asleep.
I'm really looking forward to this horrible winter to end so I can get outside more with Anna. It will be great for her to get some fresh air, but even better for me to get out more. I don't get out of the house everyday, so I'll be so happy to go for walks or just sit out on the back deck with Anna.
As some of you have probably heard, one of my dear friends and college roommates, Ted Everidge, passed away on Saturday in a motorcycle accident out in Las Vegas. Ted, 29, was in the Air Force, married and had two kids, so it's been a very, very difficult week. I've never lost a close friend and it's definitely one of the hardest things I've ever had to deal with.
Ted's wake is on Monday and the funeral is on Tuesday. It just all seems so unbelievable to me. I am currently working with a few friends to set up a college fund for his two kids, Logan and Faith, and I will be sure to post details here once I know them.
I have also started a blog to get the word out on this fund. Moody and I are also going to do an annual event or two to celebrate Ted's life each year and to give support to Brandi and the kids. Check out that blog at www.ForeverTed.com. We'll never forget you Ted, you'll be sorely missed.