Sunday, September 28, 2008

I Think I Can, I Think I Can....

...I can! I am an official walker. Stay tune, next week I will be demonstrating the run.

Friday, September 26, 2008

So Many Milestones So Little Time

Another week has come and gone and so much has happened in such a little time. We started our week with Cookie's one year check up. She is 95% of her height and 75% of her head and weight. Which basically means there is a reason to why she is towering over her little classmates.

She took her little shot like a champ and the tongue compressor was the perfect treat from Dr. Thomas.

On Tuesday, our GG and Papa Ken were so blessed to see their electricity return. Though we enjoyed having our little evacuee (GG) here, I am sure she is happy to be at home enjoying her electricity and not sleeping in a twin bed. [On a side note, I am so glad that we were able to sneak in a girls day on Saturday. I am going to buy Cookie's fall jacket for our Turkey day in AR on Saturday.]

Wednesday Cookie took the almighty steps into the one year old room. She is officially on table foods and walking up a storm. She is also drinking from a sippy cup and now sleeping on her little nap mat in school. Her precious nap mat arrived just in time from Mrs. Mandy. (If you haven't seen her stuff you need to hop over to shop princess and frogs, they are a must see.) The mat is an all in one concept and includes the mat, the oh so comfy covering that is oh so removable and washable and even has the blanket attached!

Cookie, slow down girlfriend. Two will be here before you know it!

Thursday, we took it easy!

Tonight, well I am sitting here watching the debate and enjoying writing this post much more than listening to politics on a Friday night. I love the fact that I am considered just an "ordinary" middle class if!

I look forward to what Saturday has in store and enjoying my time with my little Cookie....

Wishing Everyone A Safe and Happy (Political Free, College Football Watching) Weekend!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A Blogger and Her Camera

For my upcoming birthday the Hubby gifted me with a new camera. I am so excited! It was just what our family blog needed. Now I can actually snap Cookie's face as opposed to the back of her head. Here are a few pictures of my favorite subjects...

Monday, September 22, 2008

Final Edition - IKE Chronicles

I finally returned home a week ago Sunday to find that we had very minimal damage to our home. Unlike so many Hustonians we were one of the lucky ones who received power that evening. Thanks be to God for listening to our prayers and watching over us!

Last Tuesday we took the time to survey the damage that had been widely reported on Kemah, TX. The sight was breathtaking! I can honestly say that I was not prepared to see the reality of the damage IKE caused.

Here is an aerial picture from the media...

And here is the view of the Aquarium that I took from the side of the building...

We could only view the Kemah boardwalk from a side angle, due to the horrific damage it was closed off to the public. However, we managed to capture a few pictures of the damage that IKE caused to some of the homes in Kemah. These homes are located on the water and approximately 100 feet from the Kemah Boardwalk.

This home use to be a little bed and breakfast. Now, it is completly removed from it's stilts.

Here is an 18 wheeler that was swept into the bay. It is hard to believe that the winds were so strong that it would litterally pick up and move this 18 wheeler into the bay. That's some mighty wind y'all.

To those who have been greatly affected by the storm you will remain in the Cook's thoughts and prayers.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Edition III - IKE Chronicles

This picture was taken and post written the Sunday after the huricanne.

It has now been 48 hours since the hurricane and we still remain in the dark. We are limited to our communications; therefore, I have no idea what is happening with our area. I did manage to listen to a few minutes of the Mayor's speech from my car and he continues to announce that we should all remain "hunkered" down.

I am so determined to make it home today, even though I have no idea what I will return to, but I can say that at this moment Cookie is enjoying her flashlight and a little light reading...

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Edition II - The IKE Chronicles

This was originally typed on 9/13 in the aftermath of hurricane IKE in the dark of my grandparents living room.

After evacuating we thought that we would be in the clear and that Huntsville would sustain the winds of the hurricane. Well, I guess you can say that we were a little wrong. After a sleepless night of waiting for IKE to make landfall we paced the floors not knowing what tomorrow would bring.

After an hour of sleep, we awoke the next morning to find that Huntsville has been hit hard by the hurricane and that the subdivision that I evacuated to, had taken a direct hit. The beautiful pine and oak trees know laid on their sides, blocking streets and all of the entrances into the neighborhood.

This sign has always been a land mark when you are on 1-45. It was always are marker that we were almost home and had stood strong for atleast thrity years...

Now in the aftermath of IKE the sign is now on it's side!

We are so blessed that my grandparents and sister's homes, escaped the storm's wrath. However, we currently sit in the dark awaiting the lights to be restored.

In keeping strong to our faith we know that all things that were destructed by IKE can be restored. To those families who were impacted by IKE we will keep you in our hearts and prayers.

Tomorrow, will be my turn to face the distruction that IKE has caused in my community. But until then I will hold close to my family.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Would You Like Some Coffee Ike?

How do your grandparents prepare for a hurricane? Mine make sure that their neighbors are able to have their morning coffee even in the wake of a storm...

You may not realize it, but their are four coffee pots in the above picture and we can't forget about this little guy...

I came home from my sister's house (which is nine houses away) to find that my grandmother had set out all of her coffee pots. She informed me that she is the only one with a gas stove on the street and the neighbors depend on her when the power goes out to get their coffee high.

Can't you feel the neighborly love! Maybe Ike would like a cup as he spins on by?

Hunkerin' Down

Word of the Day Hunkerin'.

Definition: Hunkerin' is a posture, whereby one squats on the balls of one's feet for a long time, that is common in different cultures and briefly became an American fad in the late 1950s.

Per Mayor White, we should all hunker down and wait for Ike.

Well, I guess you can say I am hunkerin' down better than this guy...

Edition I -- The IKE Chronicles

After continuing to watch the news well into Wednesday evening, the hubby thought it would be best for Cookie and I evacuate on the morning of the 11th at 5 AM. When I called my sister to let her know that we were leaving at 5 AM and we would be arriving at Grandma's around 7 am, of course she questioned my 5 AM decision. I explained that there were two main reasons for my 5 AM departure. The first reason, was because we wanted to be ahead of the evacuating buses and secondly, because that is what time Starbucks opens! There was no way I was evacuating with grabbing one last cup of Joe from my favorite Baristas.

We arrived safely to my grandparents just as they were leaving to head to Wal-Mart, because they of course wanted to beat the crowds at 7 AM. While they were beating the crowds at Wal-Mart I began to unload the car and set up our little evacuation camp.

This is what I packed, besides Cookie of course:
  • Documents -- Ins.
  • Documents -- Mortgage PaPers
  • Documents -- Personal Records
  • Wedding Dress
  • Wedding Album
  • Jewelry
  • A few priceless photos

As I pulled each item out I thought how ironic, every item I quickly selected are the items that make us the Cook family. The wedding dress, wedding album and jewelry represent the moment we became a family, the documents hold the power to rebuild the roof over our heads, and the priceless photos are the ones that represent moments in our life that mean the most to us.

I hope that other families who were also mandated to evacuate were able to pack their important family items and I pray that you all are safe. Please remember, that the lord will not give us anything that we cannot handle.

Stay tune...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Should I Stay Or Should I Go Now

Over the past 48 hours we have been glued to our T.V. tracking the storm just like all the other Americans living on the Gulf Coast and the song Should I Stay or Should I Go Now...keeps ringing in my ear by The Clash . I guess you can say it is the theme song of the week in the Cook household.

I haven't thought much of the weather over the course of the last couple of weeks, because we have been so fortunate that the last few storms have turned from our direction. The only problem with IKE is that we are located here...

I guess you can say that our decision to leave is similar to voting for this years Presidential Candidates, Still Undecided.

Oh well, until we know a little more about IKE maybe I should have my niece demonstrate her snorkeling gear again? Because you never know if I might need to put mine on and snorkel down I-45.

Well; shame on me, I almost forgot to share our Cook motto of the week "Take a Hike Ike!"

Monday, September 8, 2008

Baby Got Some New Shoes

With Cookie's recent admission into the Walking Club of Baby America, it was time to buy that girl some new shoes. The shoe debate is right up there with the Milk debate of 2008. So many choices!

I recently found Pedipeds which I have really been impressed with. The baby shoe experts say that Pedipeds footwear is designed to be the "next best thing to bare feet." They allow children's feet to develop naturally and provide optimal support and protection during the developmental stages of babies' feet – from initial crawl to the first steps and beyond.

Cookie has been supporting the following pair for about a month now...

And of course I just couldn't resist getting these for the "three" cold days of winter we will have in TX...

You can find Pedipeds in your area by clicking here and for the thrifty shoppers here are a few coupon codes that I located.

With all of the comments from the Milk Debate 2008, I am sure that you guys have great advice on shoes as well and I would love to hear about them.

In the meantime Happy Shoe Shopping!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Friday, September 5, 2008

Sleeping On My Savings Cloud

Recently I got the decorating bug, maybe it is due to the excessive amount of HGTV that I watch. After five years it was time to put my bedding out of its misery and send it to garbage heaven.

I shopped and I shopped [really goggled and goggled] for the perfect bedding and everything I liked of course was just over the top expensive with a capital E. Let's just say the sticker shock of bedding was comparable to the sticker shock to the price of a gallon of milk these days.

Then right before my eyes there it was, at of all places. Their Canopy collection was the perfect bedding, I had been searching for! Now if my screen only had the capabilities of letting me feel the bedding it would have been the perfect shopping experience, you know like the scratch and sniff stickers where you could smell the grape.

I took an online gamble and placed my order, because after all there is a Wally World on every corner in case I needed to return it. Wal-Mart now offers ship to store so I wouldn't be out the shipping cost. However, since the shipping cost was comparable to the price of gas, I went ahead and had it shipped to the house. Only problem with that was, Ms. UPS rang the door bell at 9 PM while Cookie was sleeping...ugh!

It arrived one week later and y'all I have to admit it was the best on-line purchase ever, at one of the most unlikely places I would have ever thought to look at for bedding. The best part is the whole thing cost me less than $150 for all of my bedding pieces in a king size...yes, KING. My pieces included the Euro shams, pillow cases, bed skirt, comforter, flannel blanket and throw pillows. As for the sheets, I found the perfect Chocolate color at Marshalls. Marshall's had their King size Hotel Quality sheet sets on sale for $30.

The pieces above my bed were my favorite $10 finds at Hobby Lobby. In case you didn't know, Hobby Lobby is my Mommy outlet and I am there just about evey other week finding my diamonds in the rough that I can take home and spray paint.

The Hubby always know when I have been to Hobby Lobby when he sees me pull out the old sheet [that has seven years worth of spray paint on it] and I place it in the middle of the backyard. Of course I am always so giddy when I say, "Look what I got for half off" and of course he cringes at the thought of me putting, yet another hole in the wall. However, this summer I learned how to patch up the wall with spackle so I can cover up the crime scene of "Excessive" hammering.

Now that I have admitted to my addiction of putting holes in the wall, I am sure the Hubby will read this post by the time he gets home from work and be curious to know what "wall" was the latest casualty...but just like psychotic Brittany Murphy in 2001's Don't Say a Word, I'll Never Tell.

Cheers to Happy Decorating & Savings!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

M.O.M, Mayor of Multitasking

Now once again, I am not political by any means, but every once and a while I do enjoy the thumb raising, fist pumping speeches by our politicians. At times they are comical, and sometimes just down right silly but every once in a while one of their comments will stop and make me think.

Last night I tried, to stay up for the anticipated speeches by Giuliani and Palin. But geez don't they know ten o'clock is way past my bed time. So, this morning as the hubby and I awoke, I leaned over to say, "So how was it?" The Hubby just grind and said you need to see it for yourself.

After shuffling Cookie off to school, I sat down to enjoy my coffee, blogs and Of course all the headlines are raging with Palin this and Palin that.

So, I cut to the chase and immediately went to CNN to catch up on the speeches. I have to say, Mr. Giuliani I am impressed. You captured by attention for the entire 26 minutes but it was the last 2 that really made me think.

I have to say, I agree! How dare people question, Palin's (or any Mother who juggles a career and motherhood) capabilities to manage her family life with the duties of being a leader. After all she is a MOM and in my opinion MOM stands for the Mayor of Multitasking. Who is to say a MOM can't change a diaper and sign a foreign policy at the same time.

Now, I am no way saying that I am driving around in my minivan with a bumper sticker that reads, McCain 08 or Honk if you are A Obama Girl. I am saying, that I like the fact that Giuliani took the time to recognize that being a Mother is a blessing and our capabilities as Mother's shouldn't be discounted because of the high demands of a job!

With the elections around the corner, I am just blessed to be an American with the opportunity to be a working mother with the right to vote. I blessed with the opportunity to raise my child in this county with a wonderful supportive husband, and most importantly be given the opportunity to enjoy both Motherhood and a Career!

After all I am just a [Non Political] Rookie Mom learning how to juggle it all one diaper at time!

Who knows, maybe these two could be the next dream team, Daddy & Daugther 2024? They seem to be thinking about the idea...

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Hey Hey Hey

Cookie and I would like to send a big shout out of Thanks for all of the comments in regards to our Milk Debate 2008! She looks forward to trying out all of the suggestions.


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Milk Debate 2008

Forget the Presidential debates, the Great Milk debate of the 2008 has officially kicked off! Now that Cookie is the big O to the N to the E, we have started the transition from formula to milk.

When I was a kid we had one choice of milk, 2% and only on those special occasions could we indulge in a splash of Hershey syrup. Now, there is, organic, soy, 2%, fat free, DHA with Omega 3 and even one with extra fiber. So many, choices my head is spinning and I haven't even mentioned all of the flavors! It is almost like ordering a double latte, extra foam, 140 degree, upside down Starbucks coffee I heard the lady rambling off this morning. She made my coffee of the day look like a Plain Jane. Oh well, Ms. Plain Jane caffeinated me jut nicely.

I personally enjoy the Silk Plain and since it was in the refrigerator I decided to incorporate my milk in Cookie's morning and evening bottles. So far, so good!

Lucky for me, Shannon over at Rocks in My Dryer is having a special Backwards edition of Works-For-Me-Wednesday. Therefore, I pose the following question to all of you blogging Rookie & Veteran Moms....

What type of milk do you recommend for your little tots?

They Call It A Foodhawk

Introducing the new baby hair trend...the "Food"hawk