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September, 2003
(Click on an image to enlarge)

September 1, 2003

Things are starting to look up.  We're feeling much improved, although pretty wiped out, so we spent a quiet day just hanging around the house.  Mark taught Patrick how to play chess, and he did a remarkable job of catching on.  Mark also taught Alex how to tie his shoes, and he can't wait until soccer practice so he can wear his cleats, his only tie shoes.

Refresher course Training Alex's competition

September 4, 2003

We're all very excited - we're leaving for Lake George tomorrow!  So most of today I've spent trying to get organized and packed.  Today is Mom's usual day to come over and play with the kids, so she took Patrick to get his hair cut for me.  There's actually a pretty cute kid under there!

Just rolled out of bed Guy stuff

September 5-8, 2003

Click here to see our wonderful trip to Lake George!

September 9, 2003

Becca and her boys took wonderful care of Boudreaux for us while we were away.  They even delivered him back to us today and stayed for a visit!

Andrew played 'til he dropped! Patch showing off his computer skills

September 10, 2003

Today is one of my happiest parenting days.  Patrick started piano lessons!  I started playing piano when I was six, so I've been biding my time until Alex was old enough to start.  I researched and found a studio I liked, then excitedly asked him if he was ready to start lessons.  He nonchalantly said, "Nah, I'm not really interested in music."  You could have cut my heart out!  But Patrick kept asking and asking when he could start.  On a whim, I asked the music director if they took four year olds, and she said yes!  Today was his first lesson, and he did great!!!

My future Mozart

September 12, 2003

Tonight was the boys' first soccer games of the season.  Alex's team is now old enough that they have goalies, which certainly adds more excitement.

Alex playing goalie

Patrick's team warming up More warm up

Patrick was the defender - here he blocked a goal! Special instructions from Coach on kicking the ball in Then a great kick!

September 14, 2003

Things are getting back to normal.  We had all of the neighborhood kids over today.  We're so lucky to live where we do!

Patrick has been diligently practicing his piano every day, and is mastering his lessons well.  He's also showing all of his friends what he can do, and a lot of them are picking it up as well.  It's very interesting to watch Alex (remember the kid who wasn't interested in music?) sit down and do Patrick's lessons.  Maybe there's hope for him yet!

A heated game of Lego Basketball

September 18-20, 2003

Well, I survived the surgery, which at this point is about the best I can say about it.  The doctor said there were a bunch of bone fragments rather than the two dislocated vertebrae we thought were there, so it's no wonder the darned thing wasn't healing.  I've gotten beautiful flowers and some down-right hilarious get-well cards.  Thanks for thinking of me.  Right now, my la-la-land pain pills are my best friend.

September 21, 2003

Happy Birthday to me!

Thanks everybody for the great birthday cards, messages and phone calls.  Mom made me a cake and she and dad came over for a little celebration.  She insisted on the boys helping her put on the correct number of candles on the cake, which just about took the poor kids all afternoon trying to count that high!  ;-)

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - - - wait, start over - - - 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 If you can count the candles, then I'll tell you how many there are.  ;-)

Before Mom and Dad came over, my little helpers vacuumed the floors for me.  I'm still very uncomfortable, and the pain pills are my best friend.  Mark and Mom have been phenomenal taking over all of the kid care, which is a good thing because I am still off in la-la land!

He looks like he's doing a jig with the vacuum! What great kids!

My mom recently brought over a stack of books that used to be my brother's when he was little.  They've been reading and re-reading this one, The Secret Hide-out, and the book includes instructions to make spears, shields and lion masks.  Mark helped the kids make their spears out of broom handles and let them paint them in the garage.

When it cooled down this afternoon, my three bushwhackers trimmed the trees.  Nothing like young children holding sharp yard tools!  (At least he didn't have any power tools out!)

"I'm a lumberjack and I'm okay . . . . . ." The loppers are longer than Patch is!

Whew!  After typing all of this, I'm glad my only part today was to blow out some candles and eat my cake!

September 22, 2003

Alex's reading has absolutely taken off, and any spare moment he has he's got his nose in a book.

Book worm

September 23, 2003

Alex's class has a reading program in which he brings a new book home every night to read, so lately he's been reading the bedtime story.  (This is on top of the 16-chapter book he started reading this week!)

Alex enjoying being the center of attention

September 25, 2003

I'm starting to feel a little human again.  I've switched to Tylenol and have come back to earth, although I still need a pain pill about once a day.  I know I'm on the mend because I'm going stir crazy!  I walked down to the bus stop this afternoon - my longest walk yet.

September 26, 2003

I had my first outing today since my surgery.  Mark drove me to the grocery store and I did a "real" grocery trip.  It was very nice to get out, and our kitchen desperately needed restocking, but I spent the rest of the day on the couch back in la-la land.  A little more each day - I'm getting there!

September 27, 2003

Alex got his first birthday present today from Uncle Jay and Aunt Stacie.  He was so excited we didn't have the heart to tell him he had to wait until his party tomorrow to open it.

Does Stacie know him or what?  It was Lego's!!!!

September 28, 2003

Alex's birthday party finally arrived!  This is the first time we've done a party away from home and we did a reptile party at the Science Center.  It was wonderful!  From a parent perspective, I was in heaven because they took care of everything.  All I had to do was come and take pictures.  From a kid perspective - well, let's see - all day at the Science Center, cake, ice cream, presents, best friends, and a chance to pet an alligator and a bearded dragon!  We only had one snafu - we ended up losing 3 kids.  After the party, all of the kids scattered with their friends, and after a while I realized Alex was missing.  Several parents helped us look for him, and by the time we found him, 2 other kids had disappeared (whose parents had been helping us).  Of course, they were all fine, but it was a little hairy! 

After the party, we went to Alex's girlfriend's house.  Her dad is a herpetologist and breeds and sells snakes.  Alex has been asking for a snake for about a year now, so we got him one for his birthday.  He was so overwhelmed he could hardly speak.  He picked out a red rat snake and named her Cassie.  It was very exciting!

Checking out the alligators Patrick told us that this was a king snake - and he was right!

Playing a computer game in the party room birds eye view

They made alligators out of clothes clips Gotta love those dimples!

The first time I let Publix do the cake - they did okay.  ;-) Happy Birthday!

Grandma and Grandpa enjoying the party The whole crew

Presents! Two of his favorite things - books and snakes - all wrapped into one!

Petting the bearded dragon and a baby alligator

Let me introduce Cassy!  She's just a baby, and as she grows she'll get more color.  Isn't she pretty?

The quarter is to show her size - she's tiny!