Tuesday, August 31, 2010

My Luxurious Video Baby Monitor

Today, I am thankful for my video baby monitor.  With my first 4 children, I had a good, "old fashioned", audio only baby monitor by Fisher Price.  It is still kicking almost 8 years later.  After Gunnar was born, I was given some money as a gift so I decided to purchase a video baby monitor.  In the past, I always thought they were too expensive and not a "necessity".  I was excited to get my new "luxury" item and try it out.  I am very happy to say that I LOVE MY VIDEO BABY MONITOR!  I ended up finding an awesome deal on a Summer Infant Day & Night Handheld Color Video Monitor on Amazon for around $110 with FREE shipping!  It is great because instead of wondering why he is making noises (is he just moving around or is he really awake?), I can just peek at my monitor and see what he is up to.  The camera works even if it is pitch black in the room.  You can turn the video function on or off and still keep the audio on.  Also, it is portable and has a clip so you can take it with you.  I took it outside with us when we did fireworks on the 4th of July and it worked great!  The camera can be attached to the wall.  We just haven't done that yet.  I took the monitor with us when we were on vacation and it was great also because Celeste figured out how to get out of the pack n play.  This way we could see her and catch her in the act :)

I wouldn't say this is a must have for every new Mom, but if there is any way you can get one, I would!

Here are a couple of photos I have taken of the monitor:
The monitor is turned on in this photo.
He is sleeping in this pic in the corner.
Up close view of what the monitor looks like.  He is asleep in the corner of his pack n play.  This photo was taken at night when his room was dark.
The receiver is portable so you can turn the video on or off  to save battery life.  You can also turn it on or off when you have it plugged into the AC adapter.
This is the camera that I have in his room on
his changing table.  The camera can swivel and
turn many directions.
A side view of the camera to show how much it can move and

Cherokee Indians & Another Birthday Celebration

My parents went at the end of last week to see the Cherokee Indians in Cherokee, NC.  My great, great grandmother on my Dad's side was a Cherokee Indian so they took my sister and her family to go check it all out.  We hope to go one day as well.  I think the kids would really like it.

My parents brought back gifts for the kids from their trip.  Cooper and Grant got tomahawks (don't worry they are made of rubber).  Cooper keeps calling it his ax despite the fact that I have explained to him that it is called a tomahawk.  I told him he can remember because it is like when we go to the Braves game and we do the "Tomahawk Chop" :)  Kindle and Celeste got bead Indian necklaces.  Here is a close up.  They really love them!

And Gunnar got a wooden hand drum.  He actually held and shook it a bit which was cute.  I am going to save it for him till he is a little bigger since he is starting to want to put things in his mouth.  My parents also bought them a book for me to read to everyone to teach them about the Cherokee Indians for school.

I am looking forward to teaching them more about their Indian heritage!

Tonight, I went out with my friend, Alanna.  We went to dinner at Rafferty's.  It was very yummy!  We both ordered the same thing, chicken salad croissants & cream of potato soup :)  The waitress brought us a bowl of ice cream with whip cream and a cherry on top for our birthday.  We also got the waitress to take a photo of us since our last photo together was way too long ago to even mention.

After dinner, we went to see  Dinner for Schmucks.  We are both big fans of The Office and like Steve Carrell so it was a great choice.  The movie was really funny.  I laughed out loud which I don't do very often.  I would definitely recommend it.  (Disclaimer: It is rated PG-13.  There is a bit of bad language & some adult content, but it wasn't too bad.)  I am very glad we had the opportunity to celebrate our 30th birthdays together!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Teaching the Kids about Money

This morning, we decided not to go to church.  There was a church wide picnic at a clubhouse with a huge playground that is always so fun to go, however with Grant having stitches, we didn't think it would be a good idea for him to play.  Instead we listened to worship music at home and did a bible study (we do this every morning as well before Nathan starts work and the kids start school).

Nathan and I had been talking about how we need to teach the kids what the Bible says about earning, spending and saving money (Proverbs 22:6).  Since the end of the month is in a couple of days (and we are busy then), we decided we would go to Target and let them pick out the items that they wanted with the money they had earned for doing their jobs.  We told the kids that we are going to be starting something different when it came to the money they earned.  In 2008, we took Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University (highly recommend to everyone!).  During the classes, it talked about teaching your kids what the Bible says about money.  Today, I immediately thought to check Dave Ramsey's website and sure enough there is a list of all of the scriptures concerning money and teaching your children.  You can view it here.  We began by reading Matthew 6:24 to the kids and explaining to them that it is important to love God and not money.  We went on to tell them that we are supposed to be good stewards of our money.  We used the verse Proverbs 6:6-8 that talks about how the ant works hard during the spring to store up for winter.  We explained that it is important to not spend all of the money we have and save money too (Proverbs 21:20).  We also explained that we give a tithe to the church (Proverbs 3:9).  I gave them an example, if they got $10 for doing their jobs, they will give $1.00 to church, save $1.00 and have $8.00 left to spend.  We told them that they needed to chose something to save up towards that was a larger item that they wanted to get.  We also told them that if they wanted to put some of their money to spend into savings they could do that also.  We went on to explain that they could also give extra money (an offering) to church, missions or someone in need if they would like out of their spending money.  We explained to them that it is important to be lead by the Spirit (Romans 8) in all things, so they should ask God to tell them if they should give just their tithe or extra.  We made sure everyone understood what we were doing and how much money they each had.  Then, we went to Target.

Cooper picked out a watch & a Spiderman box to keep his stuff in.
KIndle picked out Disney Princess silly bandz and a Tinkerbell watch. 
Grant picked out a motorcycle.
Celeste got a ball.
It was a good lesson for them to learn at an early age so that they will be good stewards of their money when they are adults.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

A Day at the Zoo

My little meerkats
We decided to go to the Atlanta Zoo today.  We were blessed with a family membership pass by my grandparents, but we had not been since we had Gunnar.  I was definitely a little apprehensive about going to the zoo in August, but we decided to tough it up and go anyway.  Luckily, there is lots of shade and it was breezy today.  
When we arrived at the zoo, we realized they were having a festival in Grant Park so there was no parking.  We prayed for a great spot and we were blessed with a 2nd row spot in the shade.  Thank you Jesus!  The kids really wanted to ride the train and had been talking about it all morning.  So that is where we went first.  Gunnar was not too sure about all of the noise from the train at first, but he cuddled up on Daddy.

This is a not so great photo of Nathan, but Gunnar looks cute.  Kindle was covering her ears because she didn't like the noise from the train whistle.  
Celeste really loved riding the train.  She loves Thomas the Tank Engine, so this was pretty awesome to her!
This might be my favorite photo of Cooper & Grant together.
We rode the train twice.  Then, we rode the carousel.  Celeste was not too sure about it, but the rest of the kids loved it!

We went to the rock climbing wall next and let Cooper rock climb (the other kids didn't weigh enough).  He did really great.  He made it to the top both times and rang the bell!

He said "I can't look down!"
Now that we did the fun activities, we went to see some animals.  Celeste really wanted to see the elephants, so we went there first.

Cooper wanted to pose with all of the animal pictures that you put your face in.

Next, we went over to see the giraffes.  There was a new baby girl giraffe born on Nathan's birthday this year (July 13).  The zoo asked people to vote for the name of the new baby giraffe for the past month.  There was a ceremony this morning at 10am where they announced the name.  We missed it since we went in the afternoon, but we posed with the sign.

In case you can't read the sign, it says Zuri.
And here she is!

One funny thing that happened while we were over near the baby giraffe. A lady walked up to us and said "oh look at the baby".  We all assumed she was referring to the giraffe, but she was actually talking about Gunnar :)  I had put Gunnar in the water wrap so I could completely cover him up (I don't want to put sunscreen on him).  I always get so many comments when I have him in the wrap.  He does look really sweet!
I did have his sun hat on, but I took it off for the picture.
The kids wanted more photos with the animals that you put your face in.

We went to the reptile house.  I am not a big reptile or amphibian fan, so I could skip this all together.  The kids love it though.  It was feeding time for one of the snakes.  The kids got to watch a snake wrap itself around a mouse.  They were amazed.  We looked at all of the frogs, lizards and turtles too.  I kept steering the kids towards the turtles.  They just seem a little more friendly to me :)  When Nathan was out this morning, a guy told him that one of the rattlesnakes escaped from the zoo.  You can view the article about it here.  I was VERY thankful we didn't not run into her!

Kindle looking at some frogs
Kindle saw lots of kids walking around with stamps on their hands.  Her ballet teacher last year gave the kids a stamp on their hand after each class, so she LOVES stamps!  I told her they were getting stamps from going to see the pandas.  So she asked to go see the pandas next.  And they all got a stamp.

We finished the day by going to see the flamingos.  They were fighting with each other over food.  It was quite a sight to see.


It was a wonderful day for everyone!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Absolutely FabBOWlous!

I have a confession, I love hairbows.  I love seeing my daughters in hairbows.  I think it is like the icing on the cake of cuteness.  I currently have 2 hairbow holders, but I need at least 1 more.  I am hoping to win one!

Hairbow holder from ABC: Audrey's Baby Creations

Hairbow Holder from Birdie Baby Boutique

Here are a few of my favorite bows: 

My sister made these for Celeste.
My sister made these headbands for Celeste too.
A Nemo bow & a Mickey Christmas bow from Gia's Bowtique
This headband is also by Gia's Bowtique

Each of the girls has a set for Halloween from Nomie's 3 Monsters
Headband from Birdie Baby Boutique
This came as a set, but you can take the hairbow off from Birdie Baby Boutique
This was a set too.  The bow comes off.  From Gia's Bowtique
Love this Princess hairbow from Gia's Bowtique
These handbands are from Costa Rica courtesy of Uncle Jeremy & Aunt Yeri.
Love this flower from Gia's Bowtique
Of course, I love the clippies I got from Merci Bow Coup.  You can see those photos on my previous post.

I will be honest, if it was socially acceptable for adults to wear hairbows, I probably would.  I loved wearing hairbows when I was younger.  I am so glad my girls do too!

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