Monday, December 29, 2008

Barnyard Bath

Today we got a new book in the mail from Grandma Linda.  It was one of the Christmas gifts that she sent for Desmond.  I told her before hand that we were wanting books that he could chew on, because frankly he likes to stick stuff in his mouth.  So, Grandma gave him two books.  One is called Fuzzy bee and friends, and the other is Barnyard Bath.  Melissa started reading the Barnyard Bath book to him right before we got him ready for bed.  This was his reaction, and boy is it a good one.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas for Three


It was Desmond’s first Christmas, and he woke up bright and early even though we fed him late last night hoping he’d sleep in.  (Guess we’d better get used to early Christmas mornings.)  We had a yummy bacon and eggs breakfast and a delicious turkey, stuffing, and potatoes with gravy dinner.  Due to the piles of snow outside, our plans to visit family changed so we enjoyed a quiet Christmas at home - just the three of us.  We all caught naps during the day and watched White Christmas.

   IMG_3051 IMG_3063 

   IMG_3080 IMG_3102

Desmond was just as cute as could be and enjoyed playing with the wrapping paper.  By the end of the day he was all tuckered out and fell asleep drinking his bedtime bottle while Mommy hummed “All is Well.”  Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Artic Blast!

Portland has been hit hard with snow and wind and freezing rain! I have enjoyed 7 snow days in the last week and a half and now it's Christmas break. We've had ice on the inside and outside of our windows. A large branch fell off the tree in our front yard, but it was the only casualty. I enjoyed taking a daily walk in the snow to see how deep it was and to take some winter pictures. Some drifts were past my knees! We dug out the now-I-wish-it-wasn't-so-long driveway and the sidewalk... my back is still sore. The only disappointment has been that the snow has delayed our Christmas packages. I think they're sitting in a post office somewhere. Oh well! We've stayed warm and snug enjoying Christmas music and drinking hot chocolate.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Windows Live Writer and Picasa Playing Nice

Melissa and I use Picasa to sort all of our digital pictures. It’s a pretty good image cataloging program. One of the cool features that Picasa has is a button at the bottom that says “BlogThis!”. It’s pretty handy. All you have to do is select a photo or multiple photos and hit the “BlogThis!” button. It will then copy the images up to blogger and create a new post based on those images. Well, recently Melissa and I switched to using Windows Live Writer to create our blog posts. Sure, we could use Blogger’s interface, but honestly I can’t stand it, and Windows Live Writer has a pretty slick interface. Also, it will hook up to most of the major blogging engines (Blogger, WordPress, Typepad, etc).

Well, the only problem is that I could not find a button for Picasa that would open the images in Windows Live Writer. Bummer! So, I decided to make my own. It was a fun project. I’ve never made a Windows installer file before, so it took a bit of learning, but here is the final product. If you use Picasa and Windows Live Writer and would like to have a button in Picasa for creating blog posts in Live Writer, then click the below link. I copied the button into the Live Writer Gallery, so that everyone can create blog posts easily from Picasa.

Also, if you download this and find it useful please leave a comment on this post. It would be nice to know if people find this plugin helpful. Thanks.

Windows Live Gallery - Live Writer button for Picasa

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!

Me and Mommy in the snow. It was falling heavier, but it takes so long to get bundled up that it was just lightly snowing by the time we got outside.
My first time to play in the snow. It feels so plasticy!
Sitting next to the first snowman I built... ok, Mommy built and I watched. She's much more excited about all this than I am.

Monday, December 15, 2008


We're having our first real cold snap in Portland.  This is when I really don't like this old 1906 house we're living in.  The oil to run the furnace is expensive and with no insulation and drafty single-pane windows, it could run non-stop during this below freezing weather.  We turn on the space heaters and curtain off the living room to keep it warmish.  (We're up to 66 degrees right now.  Whoohoo!)  Plastic is up on the windows, and we definitely keep the closet doors closed. Our bedroom closet was 34 degrees last night!  We have to pull out what we want to wear the night before so we don't have to turn into an ice cube getting dressed in the morning.  Speaking of ice... here are a couple pictures of our kitchen window this morning.  Yep.  Ice on the inside.  Good grief!  I don't even want to think about all the mold problems this moisture creates.  Friends like the chilled glasses from the cupboards, though.  We're moving in three weeks.  Yay for dry windows and warm closets!  Time to make some hot chocolate.

IMG_2870 IMG_2876

Friday, December 12, 2008

Ready or not, Christmas is Coming!

I'm still having trouble wrapping my head around the fact that it's December!  With the upcoming move and trying to wrap up work, I don't feel like I have time to get into the "Christmas spirit".  Christmas stuff just becomes one more thing on the to-do list.  We put up a <gasp> fake tree!  It was easier and much quicker than going to chop down our own like we usually do.  I also ordered all my family gifts online so I didn't have to leave the house and fight the crowds with a teething baby.  The presents will come to me.  Hurray!   

IMG_2789 IMG_2798 

IMG_2809Desmond has put a whole new perspective on Christmas for me.  Thinking of Mary giving birth to her firstborn son who would later be killed for the sins of the world takes on new meaning with a son of my own.  I cry when I think about the innocence of a baby and what Mary must have felt.  What an incredible gift for the world!  I don't think it's something I would ever be willing to give.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

First Thanksgiving

IMG_2690This was Desmond's first Thanksgiving!  We spent it in Albany with my parents.  We've started him on a few solids, and I saved the sweet potatoes specifically for Thanksgiving.  Davin was trying to tell him they were yucky, but he actually liked them.  I am so thankful for my family and the gift of a son!

Desmond is four months old now, and at his check up earlier this week he was 26.5 inches long and weighed 20 lbs 3.5 oz.  We need a new car seat for our big boy!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Moving Back to the 'Couve!

We have big news! I'm quitting my job, and we're moving back to our condo in Vancouver. Time to leave the working world and join the ranks of the stay at home moms. I'm really looking forward to being able to focus 100% on my family now. I never want to feel guilty spending time with Desmond or get frustrated at him when he needs me. To keep working would mean doing neither my job nor my mothering very well. I've always dreamed of being a stay at home mom, and my last day of work will be January 2nd. This is a huge change for us! We're loosing a third of our income, we'll need to pay for my health insurance, Davin has a longer commute, we're changing states, loosing half of our current square footage, and we're back to common walls and no guest parking. However, I am looking forward to being back in new construction, having plush carpet, drastically smaller utility bills, and an automatic garage door opener! Needless to say, we have lots of packing to do between now and Christmas, and we need to downsize our stuff. This is our 3rd move in 4 years so we're pros, but Desmond definitely changes our normal packing routine! Gotta get a move on!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Vaccine Decision

I just finished reading a very good book by Dr. Sears called The Vaccine Book.  I have heard some scary things about vaccines and growing up my family had the philosophy of going natural as much as possible before seeking medical intervention.  I don't want to overreact and not protect Desmond from diseases, but I also don't want to blindly accept everything the doctor wants to inject into his body.  I want to know the actual risks so I can make an informed decision.  This is such an emotional topic for most people that it's hard to find objective information.  Dr. Sears did a great job of researching and presenting the facts on both sides.  It's worth the $12 to get this book.

The main question I want to know is, "Does the risk of getting the disease and then having a serious complication outweigh the risk of a serious vaccine side effect?"  The answer is that no one knows for sure, and it varies depending on which disease we're talking about.  I have a lot of thinking to do, and I'm going to give Davin a good book to read on his commute to work.


Some of the things I learned:

  • All vaccines contain something strange and/or toxic like cow, monkey, or chicken tissue, formaldehyde, and aluminum.
  • Mercury still remains in a few vaccines, and certain brands have a better ingredient list that others.
  • Based on FDA guidelines, 30 micrograms of aluminum is the minimum amount a healthy 12 lb baby could safely process in one day.  They haven't reported a maximum amount, but even so, on the recommended vaccine schedule a baby could get as much as 1225 micrograms of aluminum in one day.
  • There is a reporting system for vaccine side effects, and serious side effects include seizures, Guillain-Barre syndrome, brain damage, nerve dysfunction, diabetes, encephalitis, paralysis, and the list goes on.
  • There hasn't been a case of wild polio in the US since 1979, so the chance of getting polio is pretty much zero.  You immunize in this case for the good of society and public health rather than to prevent yourself from getting polio.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Lovin' Life with Des

Great Grandma Munger-Johnson came to see Desmond the other day. It was also her first time meeting Davin. I'm not going to go into the whole long story, but it is amazing how an innocent baby can unknowingly bring families back together.

We love our new Ergo! Well, new to us. A friend helped me get this on Craigslist. I was never fast enough on my own, since these things get snatched up the hour they're posted. I usually carry Desmond on the front, but here he is piggy-back riding it with Daddy. When he's fussy and nothing else seems to be working, we suit up and go for a walk. Des actually fell asleep on this walk, but woke up when I got out the camera.

On Sunday we had a dedication service for Desmond. My parents, brother, and grandparents were able to make it to celebrate with us. I was thinking about what it meant to dedicate my son to the Lord. Even though He's God and I'm just a mommy, it's hard for me to really hand over control of Demsond's life. I know I'm really not in control anyway, but I so desperately want to protect him from anything that would hurt him.

Desmond's been working on sitting. He can do it for a few seconds on his own... without the Boppy. Usually he ends up folded in half fussing because his tummy is getting squished. But this has also led to the discovery of his feet. Yesterday he rolled over for the first time (from his tummy to his back). Mobility has begun!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A Day in the Life of a New Mom

3:00 am - Moan as Desmond squaks over the monitor. Go pat his back. Crawl back in bed. 6:00 am - Desmond's asking for breakfast. Feed and bring him to bed with me. 7:15 am - Say good-bye to Daddy and go back to sleep with Desmond. 8:30 am - Desmond's wanting second breakfast. Diaper and feed him. Get "presentable" in as much time as he allows. 9:00 am - Work out at Baby Boot Camp or run some errands. Desmond falls asleep in the car on the way home and hopefully sleeps long enough for Mommy to get a quick shower. 11:30 am - Feed Desmond lunch. Put him down to play until he's fussing for a nap. 1:00 pm - Eat a quick lunch and work like mad while Desmond's sleeping. 2:30 pm - Feed Desmond and let him play awhile. 4:00 pm - Continue working while Desmond's napping again. 5:30 pm - Daddy's home! One of us feeds Desmond while the other fixes dinner. 6:30 pm - Play with Desmond or put him down for a nap if he's sleepy. 8:00 pm - Change Desmond into his pajamas, swaddle, feed him, and put him down for the night. 9:00 pm - Relish the quietness! Tidy up the house, watch some TV, and try to go to bed before 11! 11:30 pm - Drifting off to sleep thankful for my wonderful family and hoping Desmond doesn't move a muscle until 6:30.

3 Months

I'm gonna get ya!

I think I like this jumpy thing... at least for a couple minutes.

Ah! My favorite way to nap!

Mommy's little bug-a-boo.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Google Calendar

So, I've been working on creating a php script that pulls Google Calendar data. I couldn't find many examples of how to do it on the web. So, after much trial and error here is what I've come up with. Use as you wish.
/* The username/password used to login to Google Calendar */
/*                                                        */
/* This is the only part you should have to edit in this  */
/* script.                                                */
$google_username = '???';
$google_password = '???';

/* Include Zend framework and load libraries, used to interact with Gdata */
/* Get the Zend framework at           */
require_once 'Zend/Loader.php';

/* Login to Gdata */
$authService = Zend_Gdata_Calendar::AUTH_SERVICE_NAME;
$httpClient = Zend_Gdata_ClientLogin::getHttpClient($google_username, $google_password, $authService);

/* Replaces [link:url]Text[/link] with a properly formatted anchor tag */
/* The url must have the http:// or https:// at the front              */
/*                                                                     */
/* Params:                                                             */
/*  $text - String of text                                             */
function createLink($text) {
    $pattern1 = '/\[\/link\]/';
    $pattern2 = '/(\[link:)([^\]]*)(\])/';

    $replacement1 = '</a>';
    $replacement2 = '<a href="$2" target="_blank">';

    $text = preg_replace($pattern1 , $replacement1, $text);
    $text = preg_replace($pattern2 , $replacement2, $text);

    return $text;

/* Replaces [email:email address]Text[/email] with a properly formatted email anchor tag */
/*                                                                                       */
/* Params:                                                                               */
/*  $text - String of text                                                               */
function createEmail($text) {
    $pattern1 = '/\[\/email\]/';
    $pattern2 = '/(\[email:)([^\]]*)(\])/';

    $replacement1 = '</a>';
    $replacement2 = '<a href="mailto:$2">';

    $text = preg_replace($pattern1 , $replacement1, $text);
    $text = preg_replace($pattern2 , $replacement2, $text);

    return $text;

/* Replaces line breaks in the text with <br /> tags */
/*                                                   */
/* Params:                                           */
/*  $text - String of text                           */
function createLineBreaks($text) {
    $text = str_replace("\n", "<br />", $text);

    return $text;

/* This function applies the formatting functions defined above. */
/*                                                               */
/* Params:                                                       */
/*  $text - String of text                                       */
function formatText($text) {
    $text = createLink($text);
    $text = createEmail($text);
    $text = createLineBreaks($text);

    return $text;

/* This function formats the date/time shown to the user.        */
/*                                                               */
/* Params:                                                       */
/*  $start - Starting date/time                                  */
/*  $end - Ending date/time                                      */
function formatDate($start, $end) {
    if (date("H:i:s", $start) == "00:00:00" && date("H:i:s", $end) == "00:00:00") //All day event
        $end = $end - 1; //For all day events the end day is one greater than it really is

        if(date("M j, Y", $start) == date("M j, Y", $end)) //Single day all day event
            $date = date("M j, Y", $start);
        else //All day event spanning multiple days
            if (date("Y", $start) == date("Y", $end))
                if (date("M", $start) == date("M", $end)) //All day event spanning multiple days in same month
                    $date = date("M j", $start) . " - " . date("j, Y", $end);
                else //All day event spanning multiple months
                    $date = date("M j", $start) . " - " . date("M j, Y", $end);
            else // All day event spanning multiple years
                $date = date("M j, Y", $start) . " - " . date("M j, Y", $end);
    else //Time range event
        if(date("M j, Y", $start) == date("M j, Y", $end)) //Single day range event
            $date = date("M j, Y (g:i a", $start) . " - " . date("g:i a)", $end);
        else //Range event spanning multiple days
            if (date("Y", $start) == date("Y", $end))
                if (date("M", $start) == date("M", $end)) //Range event spanning multiple days in same month
                    $date = date("M j (g:i a)", $start) . " - " . date("M j (g:i a), Y", $end);
                else //Range  event spanning multiple months
                    $date = date("M j (g:i a)", $start) . " - " . date("M j (g:i a), Y", $end);
            else //Range event spanning multiple years
                $date = date("M j, Y (g:i a)", $start) . " - " . date("M j, Y (g:i a)", $end);

    return $date;

/* Create a definition list of the events in human-readable form. */
/* You can use CSS to style the list.                             */
/*                                                                */
/* Params:                                                        */
/* $client - GData $httpClient created above                      */
/*  $feed - The GData feed to read                                */
function listEvents($client, $feed)
    $gdataCal = new Zend_Gdata_Calendar($client);
    $eventFeed = $gdataCal->getCalendarEventFeed($feed);

    $html = $html . "<dl>\n";

    foreach ($eventFeed as $event)
        foreach ($event->when as $when)
            $start = strtotime($when->startTime);
            $end = strtotime($when->endTime);
        $date = formatDate($start, $end);

        foreach ($event->where as $where)
            $location = $where->valueString;

        $title = $event->title->text;
        if ($location != "")
            $title = "<a href=\"" . $location . "\" target=\"_blank\">" . $title . "</a>";
        $content = formatText($event->content->text);

        $html = $html . " <dt><span class=\"eventdate\">" . $date . "</span><span class=\"eventtitle\"> - " . $title . "</span></dd>\n";
        $html = $html . " <dd><span class=\"eventcontent\">" . $content . quot;</span></dd>\n";

    $html = $html . "</dl>\n";

    return $html;
Echo listEvents($httpClient, "");

Friday, October 31, 2008

Tired of the political adds?

I found this today and I thought it was just one of the coolest things. Tired of all the political adds on the tube these days? Now you can make your own with your own message.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Our Little Pumpkin

Here's our Little Pumpkin snoozin' with the pumpkins. Isn't he cute? We also went to see the "Squishing of the Squash" with the elephants at the zoo. Desmond slept through it and missed the whole thing. Maybe he'll see it next year.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Sweet Sleep

I love the peacefulness of the nursery when the sun is beginning to shine through the blue curtains and Desmond is still snuggled in his crib. We love that blanket Nana made. This is him sleeping that one morning when I had to wake him up after 12 hours so we could get to church on time.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Our Little Dragon

Davin and I are both in Tae Soo Do (although I'm taking a bit of a break right now). So even before he was born, we were talking about getting Desmond started early. Think of how good he'll be by the time he's our age! Here he is in his newly completed dobok. I'll have to make him several since he grows so fast, but I think dobok #1 turned out pretty good. My favorite part is the little white belt.

Three on a Couch

Addison is Desmond's first friend, though he's not aware of it quite yet. Here she is sharing a spot on her couch with her baby and Baby Des.

An Absolute Cutie!

Need I say more? Desmond is doing well, and he just started laughing last week. He's also sleeping through the night frequently. Saturday night he slept for 12 hours! I had to actually wake him up to feed him before church. We're getting to know each other more every day. I love my little man!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Recent Desmond Pictures

After a long, fun day celebrating Addison's second birthday... he's deep in meditation. "Don't tell Mommy I gave you Pepsi. Ack! She caught us!" Working on strengthening those muscles. Yeay for tummy time! I'm a Disney fan just like my folks.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Now about this Baby Weight

Time to get back in shape! I'm glad I was doing Baby Boot Camp when I was still pregnant, but now it's time to really kick it into gear and loose this extra weight. Gina does a great job putting together fun but "kickin' my booty" workouts. I also enjoy meeting other moms and swapping baby stories. It's good to realize I'm not alone!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Obama's Politics of Change?

Obama keeps talking about the politics of change. Yet, many of the statements he's making are just openly divisive. Is this change? For instance the below clip shows Obama accusing the McCain camp of racism. The McCain camp has NEVER brougth Obama's race up as an issue. The only one talking about Obama's race is Obama. Blatant lies like this don't amount to change in my book.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Made by Mommy

Here is Demond in a couple sweaters that I made for him. With the cooler days, it's time to pull them out. Thankfully they fit!

My Guys

I bought this shirt for Desmond when I was still pregnant because it instantly reminded me of Davin. Here are the two guys in my life. Aren't they absolutely adorable ...I mean, handsome?

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Why I won't be voting for Obama

So, the election is just 61 days away. At first I was somewhat beside myself as to whom I would vote for. I was not really jazzed about either candidate. However as I have started studying the candidates I come to realize that I could not in good conscience vote for Barack Obama. I'm not to thrilled about some of McCains views on economic issues, and immigration. However, I cannot say that I morally disagree with McCain. However, Barack Obama stands for so many things that I disagree with that I cannot vote for him. Such as ...
  1. Barack Obama voted down the Born Alive Infant Protection Act twice. This act would protect babies that are born alive as a result of a botched abortion. Barack was the only senetor in his state to vote against it. Even the other liberal senetors voted for it. How could anyone not care for a child that was born alive. Instead these babies are just left to die.
  2. Barack Obama's ties to terrorist William Ayers are befuddling. WHy would he associate, even call a friend, someone who blew up the capitol and preformed various other terrorist acts. When asked about it on September 11th Ayers responded that he did not regret what he did, and wish they had done more. He is totally unrepentant about his actions. Barack Obama has tried to justify his friendship by saying that he was only eight when Ayers commited his acts. Who cares!? Whether he wa eight, eightee, or eighty. Why would you consort with a man that is proud of his terrorist actions. Presidents should not consort with these kinds of people.
  3. Barack Obama's tax plan would increase taxes 20%.
  4. Satements such as "if my daughter were to make a mistake I don't want them punished with a baby." Babies are not a punishment even if they are born to teenage mothers. Who in their right mind would call a baby a punishment?
I could go on, but I don't want this post to get too long. Like I said at first I was not to keen on McCain either but after the Saddleback event I am beginningto like him more. He answered each question very well, while Obama talked around all the tough issues without really saying anything. I'm curious, if you are planning on voting for Barack Obama over John McCain why is that? Comments welcomed.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Swing, Swing, Swing

We have a boy who really likes to move! I never thought I'd use a swing because I didn't want to have it become the automatic babysitter. However, I also need to get other things done during my day such as eating and showering, and Desmond wants to constantly be held and in motion. Swinging him in his car seat always calms him down, but Davin's arms won't last long with this big boy, and I sure can't keep it up for very long. So we bought a swing. It gives me just a little time to get other things done. I'm also thinking about when I go back to work. This may be a lifesaver.

The Scoop on Poop

I never thought I'd obsess about poop the way I have this week. Desmond hadn't pooped in 4 days and he was obviously uncomfortable and irritable about it. He cried more than normal and often his cries would come suddenly and forcefully accompanied by him curling his body in. I felt bad because there was nothing I could do. I tried bicycling his legs (not easy when he has them stiff!), rubbing his tummy, giving him a warm bath, and finally taking his temperature to stimulate things. Last night taking his temperature finally worked, and three very messy diapers later he and I were both much happier. Pooping has never been more exciting.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Family Pic

We were trying to get a good family photo the other day. It took quite a few takes, but this ended up being my favorite shot because it makes me laugh. Desmond sneezed right as the timer went off and this is the face we got. Any good captions ideas?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Bottoms Up!

Des really likes to eat and he hates any interruptions during feedings even if he has to burp. He always has his hands up by his face which gets in the way of getting the food to his mouth, but he's also managed to hold hos own bottle a few times. Here he is with his big gulp... (4 oz)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Many Faces of Desmond

Desmond has many cute expressions and I've managed to capture a few of them over the last couple days.
Still not so sure about the whole bath thing.
Step away from the diaper!
Just about ready to start "talking."
In the zone...
You know I'm cute. Full tummy... yeah...
Falling asleep makes me happy!