Saturday, August 25, 2007

Nathaniel's wonderful week!

Nathaniel's First Day - 01
Kindergarten here I come!

Nathaniel's First Day - 02
When you have Superman covering your back - life is good.

On my computer at work I have some of my favorite pic's of our kids running as a screen saver. Normally it serves as a reminder of what is important but this week it focused my mind on the past. Our kids are already so big. The time passes by soo quickly.

Nathaniel started kindergarten last week. After his first day we all went to pick Nathaniel up from school. He was all smiles coming out to the car. We could not wait to hear about his first day. We pressed him for information asking question after question trying to reveal the hours behind closed doors. Nathaniel eventually looked over at Janice and said "Mommy, you know that list that had everything I was going to do on it?" We smiled triumphantly. Finally we will know about his first day in Kindergarten. "Yes" she replied. With a thoughtful look Nathaniel asserted "That's everything I did today!"

That was it. That was all the information we were able to gather about his first day. His subsequent days revealed more (thankfully!). The big event of the week was his class birthday. Janice brought in the whole clan and a container pilled high with vanilla and chocolate cupcakes topped with candy sprinkles. It was a fun time until the end when Nathaniel's class was dismissed to go to the indoor playground and Ben had to go with Janice. Ben cried. He wanted to go with his big brother. Ben has had a rough transition with Nathaniel gone during the day. He lost his best friend who has been by his side 24/7 for the last three in a half years. Although there is hope. On Tuesday Ben got a book and read it to Joelle as they sat together on the couch. He is a good big brother.

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He was soooo proud!

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Here is just a little reminder of another Nathaniel milestone four years earlier.

video

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Nathaniel's Kindergarten Orientation

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Last weekend Nathaniel and I went shopping. We had a list. We needed two boxes of crayons, eight #2 pencils, scissors, glue sticks and various other schoolish sort of things. Our search took us through Walmart, Target, The School Box, and Sam's club. After a couple hours we had everything but the lunch box which we found today (a Diego Lunch box). All items are labeled and ready. Tomorrow is the first day.

The pictures above and below are from last week when we went to Kindergarten orientation - Nathaniel was so excited. I had not seen the school yet and he could not wait to show me. First we pilled in to a large auditorium filled with kids and their parents. It had the same look and feel as an unearthed ant hill - the whole place was moving with children. The director of the school did her best to orient the parents while the parents did their best to make sure their children were listening. Fortunately we all got hand outs. Eventually the director gave way to the wriggling crowd and dismissed the room. As one person we all got up and en masse pushed our way out the doors.

Like a loosely connected nomadic tribe we all wandered around searching for our homes. The landmarks were various smiling teachers each next to small decorated sign. We found "Mrs Frenier" standing next to a sign that said "Kindergarten". Once inside Nathaniel located his place at a long table with a "Nathaniel" name plate, a bag of goodies and a school t-shirt. Drool mouthed chewing took up most of the children's time as the teacher provided the parents with details. We then took a quick tour of the room while Nathaniel pointed out his name on calendars and schedules. He was so proud.

Before leaving Nathaniel had his first test. He was directed to a notebook with the question "Are you excited to be in Kindergarten?" He could sign his name under 'Yes' or 'No'. After being read the question, Nathaniel curiously asked "What happens if I say 'No'?". I smiled. Kindergarten here we come.

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Friday, August 17, 2007

7 minutes of fame...

Now EVERYONE knows that Evelyn is lucky. Well at least everyone in Marietta, GA. The day before we were discharged from Northside Hospital a person from their Public Relations department came to visit us. He came in response to a message I left with the hospital asking if they would be interested in the fact that another lucky baby was born in their hospital. His visit was brief with lots of scribbled notes ending with a snap of Janice and Evelyn.

About a week ago we found out that an article had been written and published with the picture in the Marietta Daily Journal just after she was born! We are searching for someone with a printed version for the baby book (let us know if you have one!). Janice did however find a digital version of the article (see below). Too much fun...

Acworth Family Has Lucky Baby (Born 07/07/07) at Northside Hospital [link to the article]

Janice Stewart of Acworth gave birth to her fourth child last Saturday at Northside Hospital in Atlanta. This may seem like a fairly routine, if not mundane, occurrence, seeing that Northside leads the country in births, but what makes the birth of Evelyn Joy Stewart out of the ordinary is its time and date: 7:07 p.m. on 07/07/07.

Janice's husband Craig said he had thought about the possibility of the baby's birth date being on the "lucky" day soon after doctors indicated that the due date was July 6. Janice said she didn't pay much attention to the special day; she just didn't want the baby born on July 6.

"I just kept saying 'I can't have this baby, I can't have this baby,'" Janice said, recollecting last Friday. "The sixth is my birthday, and I wanted the baby to have its own."

The Acworth mother said she had a sense of relief when the clock struck midnight, signaling July 7 had begun—two hours later she began contractions.

The couple originally told family members that the baby would probably be born soon after lunchtime, but when it hadn't come as of 6 p.m., Craig had a lucky feeling.

"I didn't say anything out loud, but, at about ten til', I started thinking, 'you know, it'd be kind of cool if it was born at 7:07,'" Craig said.

At exactly 7:07 p.m. on Saturday, July 7, 2007 (07/07/07), Janice and Craig, not previously knowing the gender of the child, were happily surprised with their lucky baby girl. Evelyn Joy is the couple's second girl and fourth child overall. All four children were born at Northside Hospital.

"It was a lucky day for us," said Janice, with a big smile.

For more information about Northside Hospital, visit the hospital's Web site at www.northside.com.

Caption: Janice Stewart holds her new daughter, Evelyn Joy, in her room at the Women's Center at Northside Hospital in Atlanta. The "lucky" baby girl was born at 7:07 p.m. on Saturday, July 7, 2007 (07/07/07).

Northside Hospital is a 537-bed, not-for-profit hospital serving North Metro Atlanta. Northside has one of the largest medical staffs in the Southeast with more than 1,800 physicians and 5,000 employees. This highly skilled team of professionals served more than 430,000 patient visits in 2006. While primarily known for its expertise in women's services, Northside Hospital provides comprehensive cancer care, cardiology and other medical specialties, emergency services, surgical services, outpatient treatment and behavioral services. Northside Hospital is dedicated to delivering optimum patient care and achieves this goal by embracing technological advances, striving for clinical excellence and never forgetting that every patient deserves to be treated with respect and compassion.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Plastic Pool

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The boys LOVE to be outside especially when water is involved. I have 6 of the pictures from their most recent pool adventure but there are 7 more over at our Flickr.com account. The photos really show off the fun our boys have together. It is a great camera and deftly captures the water in mid flight. Janice must also get credit for her beautifully crafted high speed photography.

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Anticipation....

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Ben looks sooo happy in this shot. He loves being outside.

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Now that's a figure! :)

If you would like to see the rest of the photographs go here:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/totblogs/sets/72157601391737450/

Sunday, August 05, 2007

the faces of Joelle...

Joelle (21 months old) loves to see herself in the mirror and to make faces. Our cell phone is PERFECT to capture all of her wonderful expressions since she can see herself in the viewer as the pictures are taken.

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"So this 'bedtime' of which you speak - is it negotiable?"

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"CHOCOLAAAATE!!!"

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working on perfecting that "Daddy please..." face

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"Pretty Puhhhleeeeseee?"

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"I love you!"

More Joelle expresions can be found here at our flickr.com account:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/totblogs/sets/72157601170094086/

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Family Portrait 2007

2007 Family Portrait

On Father's Day we got together with the grandparents, aunts, uncles, and all the cousins (missing only two - congratulations Amy and Eric on your soon to be family of 6!). All 20 of us ate at a long table of booster seats, click cameras, buzzing video cams and lots of noise. It was a GREAT time! With full bellies we lumbered out to our cars and in a large procession wandered through adjacent neighborhoods looking for a park. After an extensive tour of the suburban portion of Dalton, GA we found a wonderful little park. We set up a tripod and snapped away taking a BUNCH of individual family and group portraits (great job Janice)!

In an effort to communicate all theses wonderful photos to everyone we now have a Flikr.com account (http://www.flickr.com/photos/totblogs/). Use the Flikr.com tool bar to find the different portrait "sets". There are sets for each family and a special set of portraits that I liked and used PhotoShop to "enhance". As an example, the family portrait above is a composite of 6 different photos - that way EVERYONE is in the best possible pose that we had available. Check out the Flikr.com account and let me know what you think - more photos to be added soon!

GOT PICS?
- a copy of the original high resolution image files can be found here on Flikr if you would like to download it or have it printed. We just sent some to Sam's club and they came out beautifully.