Saturday, December 23, 2006

Ergo Review

When Logan was a newborn, I enjoyed using a Hotsling to carry him cradle-style. Now that he is older, I'm finding an Ergo carrier to be extremely useful. Since Logan turned 5 months old, he is big enough to be carried in it on my back.

This morning our whole family went on an hour long grocery shopping trip. When we arrived in the store, I took off my coat and Logan's and donned the carrier. He sat happily the whole time in the Ergo on my back, looking around and gumming a strap. It is a blessing to carry him around without hurting my neck or back.

I'm not the kind of mom that carries my baby around all the time on principle (and I'm not criticizing anyone who does). Logan is often content to sit in his bouncy seat with a toy, to lie on his tummy on a blanket, to play in the exersaucer, or to sit up (with someone "spotting" him still if he topples). There are times, though, when he is most content if he is held, and the Ergo has come in handy when I also need to get something done.

I have also carried Logan in the Ergo while:

  • hiking
  • vacuuming
  • cooking
  • doing laundry
  • my kids have their piano lessons (which last almost two hours total)
I have at times, when Logan is no longer content with sitting, put him in the Ergo and had my kids walk around the house with me while I read aloud to them. I've also carried him around in it while reading one of my books aloud to myself and to him.

I was hoping it would be more useful to me during our church fellowship dinner. While it is useful to carry him while going through the line to get my food, he needs a nap at that time, but can't stay asleep in it due to the noise of everyone talking during the meal. In other words, it is a good place for a nap for him, unless there is a lot of noise.

I've read that it takes awhile for people to get the hang of putting the baby in the Ergo in the back carry position. I've done it by myself once, and it wasn't a piece of cake. Fortunately, my ten year old is perfectly capable of putting Logan on my back and helping me with the arm straps. Even if I didn't have that kind of help, it would still be worth it to me to put Logan in myself.

I'm writing about the Ergo on my blog, because I'm thankful that I heard about it by word of mouth on message boards and blogs and want to do my part on spreading the word about, in my opinion, the best baby carrier available. Large Family Logistics is now selling the Ergo (scroll down to the bottom of the page).


I asked my son to take this picture of Logan in the Ergo when I was helping my kids to make a gingerbread man and cookies.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Weather Outside is Frightful...

We've been hit with around 20 inches of snow, the most snow the Denver area has seen in three years. The storm was forecast to be a big one, but many of the powers-that-be didn't decide to cancel work or school until it was too late to avoid a huge traffic mess.

James drove to work, but then had to turn around and come home at 12:00 pm. His drive of 20 miles lasted until 3:30 pm! Tonight on the news, we heard a woman interviewed by cell phone who was stuck on a full bus which had been sitting for 6 hours.

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James couldn't reach the driveway (starting at the mailboxes) when he arrived home. The second picture shows the depth of the snow when he opened the garage door.

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The front of our house The view out our back door
The kids cut out the paper shapes (snowflakes, hats, angels & penguins).

Matthew standing behind a snow drift in our backyard

The kids stayed warm inside most of the day and enjoyed decorating the boys' bunkbed.

The kids decorated the tree themselves the other day but decided to add a popcorn cranberry garland.

This (taken yesterday) could be our Christmas photo...if I could edit out the dirty feet, the spit-up, the hole in the jeans, and the blink! It's reality, though!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

All I Want For Christmas...


Drawing Comparisons


You may think that it is mean of me to make this comparison, but it was actually drawn by Sophie herself! (I mean she drew the comparison, not the cartoon, of course.) Having wobbly front teeth that often stuck out at weird angles apparently brought out the redneck in her. I snapped this picture while she was entertaining the men-folk with imaginary tales in her best Mater accent.

Saturday, December 16, 2006


James and the boys just moved the piano back into place in our family room! James and I agreed to forgo painting at this time with Christmas around the corner. We will move one thing at a time as we get to painting. Moving furniture proved not to be as daunting as expected with the use of these handy gadgets. You might not be able to tell from the picture, but these Movealls have a thick pad of fluffy felt on the bottom of a plastic bowl containing a foam pad where the furniture wheels or legs rest. We moved our refrigerator into place easily without risking the wheels scratching the floor. Ditto with the armoire and the piano. They will come in handy again when we move things aside to paint.

The only Christmas decoration up at our house so far is a wreath on the front door. Maybe later today, or next week, the kids can put up the Christmas tree in the family room (after we put felt pads on the stand!) By the way, I agree with Jen Ig and her take on Christmas. She already said it so well.

An aside: My husband just asked me, "Do you want some sardines?" That had to be a joke, right?

Okay, back to photo-blogging!

Yeah, so I'm sitting up. Big deal. And what's a little drool?

I actually just moved my leg long enough to snap the picture, then put my leg back in case he toppled over. He is starting to get the balance of it though!

What Logan lacks in skill, he makes up for in intensity.

Illness Etiquette?

Tonight is the Christmas Program at church, but Logan and I are home with colds. I'm a little disappointed, because the kids and I spent extra time practicing our instruments, preparing to perform some Christmas carols. The older kids are all performing their piano pieces tonight, just without me to accompany them on cello. Sophie didn't bring her cello, though, because she can't set it up without me yet.

Obviously, I'm not deathly ill. I feel well enough to sit here and type. I stayed home to keep from spreading the cold to others, and I wish that other people would do the same when sick. However, it seems like in the workplace and at church, the stoic attitude that "it's just a little cold" prevails and people arrive, croaking, sneezing, coughing and sniffling...and spreading the joy to others.

My husband inwardly groans everytime he hears someone hacking away in a nearby cubicle. He can't help wonder how long it will be before he brings the germs home. I wish sometimes that I could ask people "Is it really so important that you are here today?" I think that the answer to that question usually is that it would be inconvenient to the person to have to catch up on work later, or inconvenient to find a replacement, or inconvenient to rearrange one's schedule. In some situations, it truly is a necessary evil to go out in public when sick, but in such cases it would be nice if the person would go the extra mile in germ containment.

I do realize that often colds are spread before symptoms are evident. I also realize that catching viruses can be beneficial in exercising and building up one's immune system. But wouldn't there be enough opportunity for illnesses to spread without knowingly going out into public with symptoms?

I am more sensitive to this issue when a baby is in the household. What may be just an annoying cold to an adult can be much worse for an infant. The baby may not get dangerously ill, but suffers eating and sleeping difficulties. (Logan woke up twice crying so far in the middle of this post, and I've gone to help him. His eyes stayed closed, because he needs the sleep, but his cold keeps waking him up.) A cold might not make an adult cry, but that is generally the result with a baby! On the other hand, a baby does run a higher risk of getting dangerously sick. What may be present as just a runny nose to an adult could be the RSV virus which might be serious enough in an infant to require hospitalization. Sophie and Matthew came down with RSV when they were one and two years of age respectively. It was a long drawn-out illness which significantly disrupted their eating and sleeping, at times worrying me when they seemed to be having trouble breathing. I was grateful that they did not catch it at a younger age, and I pray that Logan won't go through that illness as a baby.

Updating to add: I don't want to set myself up as the cold police. I have dear friends and family who suffer from asthma, allergies, chronic coughs or sinus infections. And often a cough can linger without being contagious due to bronchial irritation that takes time to heal. These maladies can sometimes seem like a perpetual cold. I'm not trying to judge every sneeze or sniffle. I'm just saying that I wish sometimes that people would evaluate their symptoms themselves and take other people into consideration when venturing out into public.

To sum up my thoughts, I think it is common sense and common courtesy to stay home when suffering from the symptoms of the common cold. What do you think?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Secondary Blog

Since Homeschoolblogger just made some updates this weekend and does not have all the bugs worked out, I am going to begin duplicating my posts here in order to have a backup blog. I doubt I'll ever take the time to copy previous posts from my homeschoolblogger blog, but from this point on, I'll attempt dual publishing.

I found this lovely (imho) template by Googling.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

"I'm Gonna Get Your Tummy!"


This week, starting on Tuesday, we had our hardwood floors refinished and a new hardwood floor installed in our family room. That meant that the kids and I were in exile in Aunt Beth's basement all week. Lest you feel too sorry for us, realize that Uncle Rich and Aunt Beth recently had their basement refinished, and we were hardly roughing it! I'm so thankful for their hospitality which made it possible to continue homeschooling without too much stress.

After the floors were finished, the flooring company informed us that it would be best not to put furniture back for seven days. *Gulp* That would have been nice to know ahead of time! (Maybe they didn't mention that little fact in order to get the business before Christmas.) We can possibly put some furniture back if it is not rolled across the floor and set straight down. Our piano is presently sitting atop a dolly in our dining room. We'll have to take it off there for the week so that the kids can practice for the church Christmas program on Friday.

Before we put all the furniture back, we want to paint the kitchen and family room. James bought the paint today and did a little priming.

Here are some pictures from our week:

Our empty family room...The mantel shelf is elsewhere. We will unscrew the whole thing from the wall again to paint. Maybe sometime we'll glue it permanently to the wall!

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The contrast between the "old" kitchen floor and the new family room floor is not as obvious in "real life" as it is in these pictures.

The kids ate supper in the living room tonight. Since they had soup, and we didn't want to risk the carpet, they ate at the bench sitting on the tabletop.

Crowded dining room! It isn't obvious in the picture, but the piano is not on the carpet, but rather on a dolly. (And by the way, the bouncy seat in front of the TV is just a coincidence. Logan doesn't watch TV unless it is off!)

In Exile

Maybe we didn't annoy Uncle Rich and Aunt Beth too much, because they asked us to come over for lunch tomorrow!

Two Little Monkeys


Monday, December 04, 2006

Jackie and Julie


My little sister Jackie sent this picture of her family with my cousin Julie and her family.