Sunday, April 26, 2009

First Ball Game of 2009

The Peoria Chiefs are our local minor league baseball team. We usually go to at least one game a season, but I anticipate going more often this year. April 26, a Sunday afternoon, they advertised a Disney Day, with kids getting a free hot dog, and soft drink (of which Craig consumed all of it!). Caleb loves all things Disney, particularly Mickey Mouse, and M-I-C-K-E-Y, M-O-U-S-E would be there in person for photo opts! It was the perfect motivator.

Seeing Mickey was the highlight for Caleb. But it was a love/hate relationship. He wanted to be able to have a visual of Mickey Mouse at all times, but didn't want to get too close. We were in constant motion, trying to "find" Mikey, but then when we'd find him, Caleb would hold tightly to our neck. But a day to remember--for sure!

I love going to these minor league games for so many reasons: The casual atmosphere, the friendliness of the staff, the cool promos and free stuff, the kid friendly berm and playground, and the beautiful field (complete with palm trees, we are in Illinois right?).

Now, I have to mention the variety of blue that Caleb is wearing. As you know, Craig is a Dodger fan, and not so much a Cubs Fan. However, since Caleb loves his new Dodger hat(s), Dad thought the Cubs jersey (a perfectly fitting hand-me-down from cousin Micah) would be appropriate since the Peoria Chiefs are the minor league team for the Chicago Cubs. Either way, I think he looked adorable!

And Caleb started putting the cap on himself this week. But usually that means its on backwards, although we saw him take it off, scratch his head, and put it back on, like an old man would do it, it was hilarious!

New Frigerator!

Its no secret that I like things organized. I got a laminator for Christmas, and there's no turning back. Well, we've updated our kitchen with new stainless steel "fridgerator" and dishwasher (We've now done our part to stimulate the economy!) Since cooking isn't really my thing, the kitchen is something I've never worked hard at organizing...until now.

Since I had a clean fridge to start with, I thought...

Why not have a specific shelf for certain items?
Why not group like items together?
Why not be able to find food items before they become great micro-biological specimens?
And to help us remember those groupings, why not label where the items go?

I've justified this by saying that it will help Caleb learn to read, but really it will help both Craig and I always put thing back so we each know what food we have and what we need. I know, I'm crazy..but labels make me happy!

Note #1: Craig prefers the phrases "fridge" or "refrigerator" NOT "Frigerator." I thought I knew all those silly little things about my husband, but this one was highlighted when the women who sold us our appliances kept using the WRONG terminology, and it made Craig's skin crawl! Who knew?

Note #2: My Mother LOVED the idea of having these same labels in the fridge at the cottage. So Cottage regular attenders, beware, these labels may apply to you!


This Easter Caleb is old enough to start some traditions. While I didn't have him color his own eggs, we did spend the week before Easter practice hiding and finding the plastic eggs. Then Easter morning, I put a line of eggs outside his bedroom that lead to his Easter basket. I love how excited he was when he found each egg -hid plainly in sight! Genuine joy! My mom brought some actual eggs that I decorated years ago--real shells with the insides blown out. Kinda weird to think that I played with the same eggs that Caleb is now enjoying!

I had a lot of fun putting together his Easter Basket this year. It included, new spring sandals, some play animals (the safari variety), wonder book & markers (wonderful---since staying on the page is NOT a priority at this age!), two new Thomas the Tank Engine -Engines, an Elmo Springtime DVD, a couple hot wheel cars, and of course Winnie the Pooh themed tooth brush and toothpaste. Candy was not really introduced this Easter. He got a couple fruit bars and other yummy treats, and he didn't know the difference! Caleb's Grandma got him more plastic eggs, a video, some Bible books-focused on singing (so we LOVE those), a pinwheel, a new shirt, and other goodies. Now, I will say here that the true importance of Easter, Christ's resurrection, was not lost. We had several Christian Easter books that we read and discussed this year.

This is Caleb playing with the elephant, and doing the sign--although he does actually say the word now too--but somehow, the sign accompanied with the sound is more fun! After church we went on a walk and did a little mini-Easter egg hunt outside. The nice Easter outfit was sort of lost, because of the necessary addition of the new ball cap! Oh well...he still looks nice!

New Hobby--Treasure Hunting!

Well, Craig has introduced a new hobby for the family. It involves a hand-held GPS and looking for "treasures." The hobby is called geocaching and here is the official website. Basically people leave a log list, usually cleverly hidden, and get the GPS coordinates to share with others. When you find the cache you sign it, and put it back where you found it. Then you can log onto the website and make any reports about the cache, like whether it was wet, easy or difficult to find etc... So far we've found mostly micro-caches, which are about the size of a thumb. But one we found was a small plastic container, and people leave items behind. I guess its like any other hobby--its a sort of community, brought together even closer by internet.

Its fun because it gives us a reason to be outside, go new places, and to spend time together as a family. While the overall idea is somewhat "geeky," we love it. Craig goes online and downloads all the cache sites found in our area into his GPS. We can even get extra hints & tips (like how difficult the find is) and that has proved helpful, because we are "newbies."