Monthly Archives: October 2009

Rain, rain, go away!

Remember the old kids saying:

Rain, rain, go away

Come again some other day

We want to go outside and play

Come again some other day

It’s been raining (it feels like) nonstop for several days. I just want to get outside and enjoy what’s left of the beautiful color in the trees or take pictures of my kids in their Halloween costumes outside. The best would be carving pumpkins outside instead of on my kitchen floor. This picture is what’s getting me through.

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One question…

What’s with all the ladybugs? Holy cow. I have heard of them in swarms all around our area. I had never seen so many until my session on Sunday at Concordia Seminary. It was gross. They were everywhere, you would walk through the swarm and they would be in your hair and on your clothes. I counted 12 on me at one time. I’m not a bug person, can you tell?!

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I guess it could be worse… especially if you lived here.

A weekend full of photography

This weekend was busy busy busy.

You know from the previous post we had an excellent time on Friday at the wineries. Well on Saturday we woke up early and met my friend at Castlewood State Park where she took pictures of our family outside in the wonderful air and pretty trees. I also brought my camera and took a picture of her and her girls. She then took some time to talk “shop” with me. Explaining more about my camera and f-stops and shutter speeds. Everytime she talks a light goes off in my head. 🙂 I’ll blog more of those pics after this post…

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Saturday afternoon we attended our little cousin’s 3rd birthday party. It was a cute Cardinals theme and the kids had fun playing but oh my J was not happy when we left. He was down right pissed off. He threw a fit like I have never seen before. Their favorite part of the evening (besides cake) was the tractor ride.

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Sunday morning I met one of L’s classmates and her mom at the park for some christmas pictures. We had a lot of fun and I think I got a couple really good ones. If you wanna see more of their session you can visit www.hollajanephotography.com.

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Sunday afternoon I met the P family at Concordia Seminary (an awesome place for photographs) to photograph they’re two darling little girls. They were flower girls in their uncles wedding and they never got pictures of them and the beautiful dresses their grandmother made. Again, if you want more just check out my professional blog at www.hollajanephotography.com.

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What a fantastic weekend. Busy but full of family and friends.

 

My Mom’s Birthday

My mom’s birthday was this last Friday and she loves going to the wineries so we decided to try a new batch of wineries this year. We usually head to Augusta, MO and enjoy the views and wine at Mount Pleasant Winery. It’s really beautiful there. But I had never been to historic Ste. Genevieve and knew it might be fun for my mom to walk around the antique shops and then head to another favorite winery, Chaumette Winery.

We drove to historic downtown Ste. Genevieve first and walked through one antique store, not finding much. We were a little disappointed in the historic area. Shops are harder to find, we were expecting a street similar to Old St. Charles. It’s still a wonderful town we just didn’t stick around all that long to explore it more in depth. The kids were rather lucky, when we parked our car we parked right outside a cute candy store. So my mom took them in there and let them buy whatever candy they wanted. I may have gotten some too.

I found this really cool old house just outside Ste. Genevieve…

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While paying at the candy store JT found a brochure that listed all the wineries in the area and he found one called Cave Vineyard. It’s on the way to Chaumette so we decided to stop and check out the winery in a cave. Very interesting. You stop at the top where you can park and pay for some wine, buy some cheese or do a little wine tasting for $5 and you get to keep your glass. We bought one bottle and started walking down towards the cave. The trees were beautiful, there isn’t really a “view” but it was amazing. We were the only ones there so the kids could run and they loved that they were sitting in a cave. There is a pesky yellow lab that wouldn’t leave our sides and kept trying to get our food but being a dog lover I didn’t let it get us down. At the cave vineyards we gave mom her presents, the kids gave her a polka dot umbrella and I gave her a new coat. She loved both of them, but the kids played with her umbrella the whole time we were there.

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We left the cave vineyard after our bottle and headed to Chaumette for lunch and more wine. Chaumette is beautiful. I highly recommend it to anyone that is getting married. There is a small chapel on top of a hill overlooking the winery, the inside of the winery where the reception would be held is gorgeous and there are cabins for your guests to stay the night. Love it.

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Happy Birthday Mom, we love you and had a wonderful time.

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Random Photos from the Patch

Here are some fun photos I took at the patch Sunday. No one is in them, there just random shots.

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Pumpkin Patch 2009

This last Sunday we visited the pumpkin patch. It was pretty much the only day we had available the whole month of October. We lucked out on the weather. It was beautiful. Even more exciting… my mom, brother and future sis-in-law came along. So the kids were surrounded by their favorite people.

We went to Eckert’s over in Millstadt, IL. It’s our favorite pumpkin patch because of all the things you can do there. It was really crowded because it was finally a nice day but it was fine we still had fun.

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It was like a kid free day for me. They got to sit on the top of the wagon so they were super excited, plus mommy and daddy weren’t up there with them. Just their GeGe, Unca Na and Aunt Carrie.

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Love this picture of my little man

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Oh and this guy is pretty cute too…

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Awesome view… you can see the arch from the patch.

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Then the hunt began

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The horizon is so off on the first picture but oh how I love it.

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My mom wanted a picture of all of her “kids”. Aren’t we adorable? My family is so short compared to my brother (he’s 6’5″) and C.

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They are too cute together and so much fun to take pictures of…

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More pictures of the family, these two are pretty cute too.

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Pony rides and flocks of ladybugs

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Finally after all that fun we were starving so we headed back to STL for a yummy steak lunch to celebrate my brother’s birthday. I love my family and love being with them all at the same time.

I forgot we stopped to pet the animals and there were two baby camels. We watched a little boy feed one of them and while we were doing that the other walked over to J. He put his hand out to pet the camel and the camel took J’s whole hand and part of his arm into his mouth. When I pulled it out it had so much goo all over it I had to walk away because I was gagging. My poor Mom tried to clean him up as much as she could but it was all over his sweatshirt. We are still laughing about it today. I only wish I had captured it on film.

Exergen TemporalScanner Review

Thermometer I don’t know about you but when L or J has a fever I know it right away. Usually my lips applied to one of their foreheads alerts me to a fever. I’m not good enough to tell you the degree but I can tell you if it’s high or not. This is all great but it’s definitely not what the pediatrician is looking for when you call to say your child is sick. You don’t usually say “your forehead is warm when I touch my lips to it”. This is why there’s this great invention called a thermometer. Ever heard of it?! 😉 We have all of the different kind you can have. We have the mercury one, digital and of course the ear thermometer. The mercury and digital are only correct if it’s rectal or under their armpits because they are way too little for under the tongue. Have you in the middle of the night tried to undress your child so you can place it under their armpit? It’s a struggle.

Then there’s the ear thermometer. I thought it was the answer to my prayers, but it turns out it’s the worst on the market. You have to get it in there at the right angle or the reading is all wrong. So frustrating plus it can hurt your poor child. The dilemma’s of temperature reading, I swear. Something that should be relatively simple is confusing and painful. Well you can imagine when given the opportunity to review a Temporal Scanner I jumped at it. It’s exactly like the one they use in the doctor’s office.

The Exergen TemporalScanner is definitely a kinder, gentler and more exact thermometer. It’s so easy to use. It requires a 9 volt battery that is included in the packaging, once installed you are ready to go. You start by taking off the protective cap, place the thermometer’s probe flush on your child’s forehead (preferably in the middle), press and hold the scan button, slide to the left or right towards the hairline. Make sure you keep the probe flat and in contact with the skin the entire scan (2-3 seconds). I’ll be honest this takes some getting used to, usually after 5 scans you’ve got it down. I would practice a bit first but then also be sure you are more gentle because the first time I made L’s forehead red. But, seriously I wouldn’t lie, it’s easy.

So now that you know all about my experiences with the thermometer I’ll post some FAQ’s.

What is the Exergen TemporalScanner?

The Exergen TemporalScanner is the world’s first infrared thermometer designed to measure body temperature by taking a reading from the temporal artery. The patented technology employs an infrared sensor that accurately registers body temperature to within +0.2° F, a much more accurate means of taking a temperature than any other way including oral, rectal, axillary (under the arm) and tympanic (in the ear). It is also the least invasive method, depending upon a gentle sweep over a patient’s forehead.

What does the TemporalScanner measure?

The TemporalScanner captures naturally emitted heat from the skin over the temporal artery, taking 1,000 readings per second, and selecting the most accurate. With its patented Arterial Heat Balance system, the TemporalScanner measures ambient temperatures, mathematically replaces the small temperature loss from cooling at the skin, and displays an accurate arterial temperature.

What is arterial temperature?

Arterial temperature is the same temperature as the blood flowing from the heart. It is the best determinant of body temperature.

I’ve heard the thermometer is sensitive to ambient temperature. Is it?

Yes, it is sensitive to ambient temperature, which is part of the reason it is so accurate. But, as long as the thermometer is in approximately the same ambient temperature as the individual who temperature is being taken, you don’t have to be concerned.

What else should I know?

1. Measure only the side of the head that is exposed. Any covering hair, hat, etc. will prevent the heat from dissipating, and would cause the reading to be falsely high. This also applies if one side of the head is into a pillow.

2. Slide the thermometer in a reasonably straight line across the forehead, midway between the eyebrows and the upper hairline, and not down the side of the face. Midway on the forehead area, the temporal artery is less than 2 millimeters below the skin surface, but down the side of the face, it is much deeper and less accurately measured.

3. You have purchased the gentlest and most accurate method of temperature assessment in the world.

Where can I purchase a TemporalScanner?

They are available at Wal-Mart, Babies R Us, Walgreens, Toys R Us (I’ve seen them at Target). You can contact Exergen at 1-800-422-3006 or email medical@exergen.com for additional stores near you. Also check out their website http://www.exergen.com/medical/TAT/tatconsumerpage.htm

If any of you have any other questions about the thermometer or how it works please feel free to contact me or leave a comment.

11 days til Halloween

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Zing Zang Zoom

We went to the circus… and had an amazing time. Thanks to this good ol blog I received 4 free tickets to the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey while it was here in town. We became excited when we saw the train pull in earlier last week. (We drive by the downtown train yard everyday when we take JT to work.) All week we saw trucks with these trailers attached moving through downtown. The kids would spot one and scream with excitement.

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On Saturday we rode the Metrolink to the circus because it saves a bunch of money but also because we thought the kids would love it and I was right they did. We rode it once with them before when they were babies but of course they don’t remember.

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L is so funny when we arrived they were both so excited but she made me stop and take a picture of them outside the venue. She is so much like me.

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We arrived early so we could watch the pre-show. Our seats were amazing. We were down close to the front so we didn’t miss anything. We didn’t actually go down there because it was packed but sitting and watching was just as great. We saw an elephant paint a picture, an elephant play basketball, clowns, jugglers and a woman who did acrobatics on an aerial silk (I believe that’s the official name). That was all just the opening show.

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When the circus did start it was extremely entertaining. All of a sudden the circus performers burst into the ring singing a catchy song about Zinging, Zanging and Zooming. There were tons of singing in between acts and it wasn’t hokey. In fact they were singing a song about “not trying the acts at home” and it really stuck with L. She even remembered the words afterwards. (JT and I were actually singing the Zing Zang Zoom song all night.)

We all had our favorite parts. The elephants, the tigers, the dogs and clowns, the horses, the tight rope walkers, the cannon and the guys that run around in those huge hamster wheels (no other way to explain it). So much to think about and talk about, so much to buy. Yikes it cost a small fortune but it really was something we’ll remember always. I loved this circus. It moved at a great pace and was extremely entertaining. Thanks to Mom Central for allowing us the opportunity to attend.

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My kids keep asking to go back which to me is a successful visit. I’m sure we’ll go again next time they are here.

I’m boot obsessed

I have so many things to do around the house today; I have three blog posts I could be writing (2 that I need to do ASAP)…

But instead I sit here OBSESSED. I cannot stop online shopping for boots. I know what I want but #1 there expensive and #2 too many to choose from. I basically want the Frye Harness Boot for a cheaper price. This sweet looking boot is $218. I could buy other things I need more for that. But isn’t she pretty.

Frye Harness

My soon to be sister-in-law bought a pair at Target and they are so damn cute but the ones at the Targets that surround my house, in my size… oh well they don’t exist. How do I know this?? A very hard working friend. I am carless today and she ran to her local Target out of the kindness of her heart to see if they had them. How sweet is she?!

Mossimo Harness Boot

Famous Brand Shoes has a huge sign in their windows that states 50% boot sale. Drool. They have these that are super cute and the price isn’t bad but they are only available online and I like to try on before I buy. I saw two pairs online and while on the phone with my friend she decided she was going to go in search of a pair of black slouch boots. She found both of these but I want to see them up close first.

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Blowfish Boot from Famous

But then I visited Zappos, Shoes.com and Piperlime. Geez. The options are crazy. They range from $230 to $89 and each one is cuter than the next. Of course the cutest ones are the most expensive ones. They all look similar, have you noticed. No heel, brown and some sort of belt adornment. I want them to rugged, I want to be able to wear them in the snow and I want them to be comfortable. I can’t even begin to glance at the black ones I would want or even what kind of purse I want to carry this winter. Ahhhh… I am up against accessory madness.