Wednesday, January 06, 2010
That's my new nickname for Emma. Every night after she's been in bed for ten minutes or more she comes out again with some ailment or complaint. Tonight it was that her eyes hurt. Last night it was hiccups that made her throat hurt. Another night her legs were hurting. Another night her legs will itch. I think every part of her body has had some problem or other ten minutes after lights out. The solution to tonight's problem was easy. "If your eyes hurt then go lay down in bed and close them so they can heal."
Holiday Lights and Ice
We took a trip to The Homestead to see their Holiday Lights & Ice display. The Homestead is a resort hotel that is favored by rich people and Congressional types. We're always hearing about this or that celebrity who recently performed there. In 2009 they made national news for a double-murder amongst employees there. We went to see the lights because we thought Emma would enjoy the treat.

Welcome! Don't be intimidated. Heh.

Their annual giant Christmas tree. Live, of course.

A gingerbread village created by their chefs.

A giant poinsettia tree in a random hallway. Man, to have that poinsettia contract...

Heading outdoors into the freezing evening...

Emma taking it all in...

One of the hot springs for which the resort is famous.

The temporary skating rink.

The Casino Club Restaurant on the grounds. Perhaps you can see the fire pit with the rockers around it.

The lights on the hill in front of one wing of the hotel.

Another area where you can see the hot springs.

The best of my blurry pictures of the hotel as we were leaving.

A tree festively adorned.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010
On the 23rd
Emma's Christmas party at her preschool.

More new toys for Christmas!

This HP Dreamscreen was a gift from Aunt Patty :) I hope she'll be pleased to know that it's up and running in my kitchen. So far we've used it mostly for the clock, the weather, and Pandora. It's awfully convenient to be able to hit a remote in the morning and get the weather forecast for the day. To accomplish all this we're using our WiFi connection. I was able to hook the Dreamscreen up with my Snapfish account and feed one of my albums into the digital frame feature. However, I've decided I'd rather make a collection of pictures optimized for horizontal orientation and load them to the internal memory.

I love the Pandora feature. I actually discovered it only a day or so before when reading raves about it in regards to iPod apps. I can see why people are so enthused. So far I've created four channels. I have a Billy Idol channel, a Queen channel, a Dean Martin channel, and one for The Smiths. I'm amazed at how well the Pandora program matches songs that would belong together. It's much superior to listening to an 80's channel with the same tired songs over and over again.

It's nice that you can check your Facebook on it, but I can't see using it much for that. I can do that on my iPod Touch and on the computer. With those methods I can actually respond to posts, so they're more useful.

I look forward to seeing my Dreamscreen without all the Christmas...uh...crap piled up around it.
Merry Christmas to me!

My new toy. I'm having so much fun with it. Mostly shopping for apps to add to it. Today I read a headline that claimed that the Apple Store has sold 3 billion apps in the last year. Believe me, I helped. However, I suspect a large part of the apps they "sold" were free apps. Anyhoo...I'm loving the Ipod Touch. Even though I moved all my music and videos onto it I'm mostly using it as a mini-computer. I have WiFi at home, at work, and at Noni's so I can get online most of the time. I can even send text messages to people's phones from it. Awesome. I'm starting my fourth "page" of apps. The shopping is a large part of the fun. I've been Googling for "favorite apps" and "best apps" and reading all sorts of lists for suggestions. If you have a suggestion let me know!
A million updates...or so
Jack is playing in his swing as I steal a few moments to type with two hands. I owe you a lot of pictures and the sad fact is that I haven't processed a single one from the holidays yet. I'll get to them when I can. In the meanwhile...

We had a lovely holiday. The pressure on me building up to the big day was intense, even though I tried not to let it be. There's so much to do to make a whole family mobile for our annual whirlwind Christmas tour. We survived it though. I'll share more details as I share pictures.

We've been living with a permafrost since the big snow three weeks ago. That snow is still there, along with layers of ice. My whole driveway is ice right now. They're not calling for temperatures above freezing here until next Wednesday. Joy.

Jack will be eight months old tomorrow. Wow. He continues to be a happy, very social and very engaging baby. Not that he doesn't have cranky spells, but they're fairly predictable and usually related to being tired or hungry (or poopy). He started commando crawling this weekend. It's just amazing how fast they develop skills from now through the next four years.

I love my car. I'm ever so glad I chose a Hyundai Sonata. I love, love, love the pep of the V6 engine. I had to buy new tires and new rear brakes last month, but that's not an exceptional problem at 30,000 miles.
Surgery scheduled
Out with the old...gall bladder. I had two attacks in December, the second one sending me to the ER again. I'm done. I went for my surgical consult this morning. I'm scheduled for surgery on Thursday, January 28th. I have to go for a pre-op nurse interview the week before. Noni has volunteered to take care of the kids while I'm having it done and during my early recovery. M and I are both appreciative. I'm not looking forward to paying the costs, the insurance hassle, the hospital, lost work time, and recovery, but I suppose it has to be done.