Thursday, September 20, 2007

Heavy stuff

I joined Weight Watchers again three weeks ago, and I'm happy to say I've lost 7.4 pounds. I have a ways to go, but I feel good about eating healthier and trying to exercise. Made small steps in the exercise department this week, but hope to keep adding on. The pleasant weather we're having helps to want to be outside.


Yesterday I got a migraine headache. I get them infrequently, these days, one or two a year. Some years I've gotten more, some years less. For me they are triggered by hormones, caffeine, alcohol and just stress. The last time I got a migraine was the Friday before Masters week, the day before we were leaving on vacation and had to leave our house spotless and ready for renters. It was also the day that Erin had two ballet performances.

If I get a migraine, it is usually first thing in the morning and I know that it's coming. I should check into the migraine medications that are out, but I don't get the headaches so often that I make this a priority. For me, they only last a few hours. I get sick, need to be in a dark room. If I can sleep for a few hours, by noon I am usually OK, but tired.

I think I started getting migraines when I was 13 years old, but we didn't realize that's what they were. When I was an adult, I read this essay by Joan Didion in The White Album that I realized what I suffered with was migraines.

For a few hours, I am helpless. I get sick. Can't make the lunches, can't walk Erin to the bus. I do managed to call the piano teacher and tell her we won't make it. Rene stays home a bit and learns the details of who gets what snack and lunch and which water bottle. He gets to look up the school lunch menu on the computer. I get a day of forced rest.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Almost fall

This is the first week that it's cool outside in the early morning. Hooray! It's actually pleasant to be outside. We've started talking about what we want to be for Halloween (current plans: Erin, black cat; Lauren, Tinkerbell or Barbie Fairytopia). Luckily we have most of what's needed for these costumes.

And we are busy! Erin seems to be much more confident in first grade than she was at the start of kindergarten. We got our first progress report / report card already and Erin is doing great. Last year, she didn't seem to really bond with any particular school friend, so this year I decided to have a few Friday playdates with some classmates (one at a time) and that has worked out really well.

And as for our other activities, we are busy. When I list them all, I'm embarassed that I'm one of those moms guilty of overscheduling her kids. But these are all things that Erin is interested in, and enjoys, and for now it seems to be working. Erin has always needed to be on the move. For starters, Erin is now a Brownie scout, and I am a Brownie leader or co-leader, as my friend Paula is the real leader. But I do what I can. Paula made Audrey and Lauren their own special "vests" to wear during out meetings. They are too cute. Erin will be selling cookies this year, so if you're craving some thin mints, let me know.

Erin continues with ballet, but after attending the Arts in the Heart festival this weekend, she expressed an interest in Irish Dancing. Hmmmm, maybe next year. She has been taking piano lessons for a month, and really loves it. Saturday mornings we're taking swim lessons again.

And of course, it wouldn't be the start of school without strep throat. Erin got strep throat last week, but luckily we caught it quickly (thanks to Mommy's intuition) and she only missed a day of school, which was a half day anyway.

But Erin's big news is she's getting a new tooth! Unfortunately the baby tooth it's replacing is still there, and the dentist told me to encourage her to wiggle it, but it doesn't seem to be moving too much. I'm making tooth fairy plans for the big moment.

Lauren is really loving preschool this year. It's a little more structured this year. I dropped her off late one day, and saw her friends come to great her in the yard. They shared a hug that lasted a few minutes! She's excited to go to school each day, which is a change from last year when she was more clingy with me. And finally, finally, she's taking ballet! Which she loves, loves, loves.

When we're not busy with school and other activities, we're playing in the yard or neighbor's yards, riding our bikes, taking walks (at our usual Savannah Rapids Pavillion route along the river and canal), painting, making things, reading books (which Erin can now do on her own!) and Erin is obsessed with documenting everything in her life in her new diary (actually a dollar address book from target).

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Summer recap: final edition

Whoa, I'm way behind on my summer recap. Need to start writing about current events, so I'm hoping for a few posts here. Oh well. Let's see, what did I forget?

Swim team. Swim team ran from the end of May through June, and while it seems a long time ago, it really consumed our time. When Erin started, she couldn't swim very far (certainly not across the pool!) and wouldn't put her head in the water. By the end of the season, she swam in six meets, participating in freestyle, backstroke and sometimes relay. Her times vastly improved over those six weeks. And she had fun! She was hesitant sometimes, but she always did it, and I am proud of her for that. She enjoyed the concessions too! Parents need to volunteer, so I worked the concession a number of times which was fun and crazy busy! Best selling concession candy: Sweet Tart Squeeze, which is basically a toothpaste-like tube full of sugar gel. I ultimately convinced Erin that the candy was disgusting and would rot her teeth. Our concession was one of the few concessions to sell fruit, which always went quickly too. Of course there's nothing like a swim team burger on the grill.

She even participated in the championships at the Augusta Aquatic Center, which was very crowded and a little overwhelming.

The best part of swim team for Erin was getting ribbons, and finally, at the awards banquet, a trophy! She is proud of her trophy and ribbon. Oh, and being on the number one undefeated team! Go Crocs!

Art classes: Erin took some art classes through the Gertrude Herbert museum. Her weeklong class was a sculpture class. I need to photograph her artwork, but, this was right up her alley.

4th of July: Our neighborhood had an all day 4th of July cookout, which was quite lovely. Lots of food, kids, dogs, did I say food? Thanks, Miss Molly, for hosting!

6th Birthday! Erin turned six, and requested a small party with a few friends. We had the option to "share" our birthday with a friend and have a big party, but Erin wanted a few friends to go to Art's a Way and paint pottery and come home for a tea party lunch. So that's what we did.

Beach! The girls and I went to LBI while Rene had to take a training class in Orlando. Rene missed a fun week. We flew a day early and stayed at Carolyn and Paul's house. Then we headed to the beach. After our annual family meetup at The Chicken or the Egg, we got an early beach start before we could get into the houses. Most of the family was staying in a nice big old Victorian house, and my parents, the girls and and I stayed in a smaller house just behind it. The setup worked great. Thanks to Carolyn and Aunt Joan for planning and organizing the houses.

We got to meet baby Natalie, and as Lauren still says often, "baby Natalie is so, so cute!" It was fun to see Lauren, Lara and Samantha play together. We spent some nice hours at the beach. Erin ventured into the ocean, and loved it! Finally, on the last day, Lauren ventured in for a minute. The kids got to take turns on the kayak at the bay one day. Erin saw a boy selling shells he had colored with crayon, so she stole his idea. She set up shop every day at the end of our driveway. "Shells for sale, dollar or a quarter!" I thought the smaller shells were a quarter, and the larger ones were a dollar. It wasn't until the end of the trip that she told me that people could choose how much they paid, either a dollar or a quarter. She ended up making $10! And not all of that was from family either.

As always, we loved our week at the beach, and seeing our family. We loved the waterpark, the bay, the few nightly walks to the ice cream shop, the outdoor concert at the park across the street, the dolphins, the Beach House dinner (thanks, Nana and PopPop for watching the girls!), the cool evening breezes, good NJ pizza (no cool evening breezes or good NJ pizza in Georgia), playing with chalk, sand castles, shell collecting, the kiddie pool at the beach, Yahtzee, and so much more.

At this point, summer was moving along pretty quickly. School started for Erin on August 13th, and we hosted a neighborhood ice cream social on the Saturday before school. A good time was had by all.

And then, school started. I'll post school updates later. For now, here's a picture of Erin and Lauren as we waited for the bus. The hazy effect? The steamy hot outdoor sauna that fogged up the camera lens.

Summer updates now officially over. Phew!