Saturday, July 11, 2009

4th of July 2009

Hope everyone had a relaxing 4th of July this year. We kicked it at our friends, Scott and Angela's house along with another couple and their two little boys.

The boys all had a great time running around the yard, playing in the water and consuming a lot of goodies. Scott was cooking up a 4th of July smorgasbord of food that included pork roast slow cooked in the smoker all day, crab legs and corn on the cob along with sides of coleslaw, pasta salad and a fruit tray from the ladies.

Just before Jayden had to go down to bed, dad was able to sneak a few fireworks in this year. Nothing too crazy even though those are DEFINITELY available up here, crazy place up north called BoomCity that has 100 stands of craziness. Even though he was a fan of the few that dad set off he was still won over by what I think is the #1 firework ever made for kids - PopIts.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

We're going to the Beach, Beach, Beach......

The Friday before the 4th was supposed to be a beautiful day so we decided we needed to get out and enjoy it. We have not done too much exploring up north here since we moved to Everett and figured this was as good a time as any. A friend of ours suggested we try Whidbey Island and Deception Pass state park.

We looked up Deception Pass and it was only an hour drive up north. It had hundreds of camping sites, day use camping areas, salt and fresh water beaches as well as swimming areas. Sounded perfect!!

Since Jayden still will not nap anywhere other than the car and his bed, we headed out early to try and make the most of the day. Jayden was excited.

When we arrived at the beach area it was awesome. There were ton's of shore line to play on with BBQ's and picnic tables. Even though it was typical Washington shoreline, some sand and a lot of rocks, Jayden did not mind. He spent the better part of an hour throwing rocks into the water and wading out a bit to get his feet wet.

After the rock throwing we walked to the swimming area close by. It was nice and sandy there with a nice roped off area that was pretty shallow. Jayden had a blast splashing around and walking out to the deeper areas with mom and dad. A small puddle of water, which he called his "bath", provided the perfect spot for him to plop down and play in the mud/sand while mom and dad set up a picnic blanket and relaxed a little.

Soon after we enjoyed our picnic, we packed up and headed to the car, stopping along the way for a snow-cone. We had a great time and will definitely be back!!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Happy B-day little man....

A few weeks back the little man made it to 3 years old. It seems like a pretty decent milestone in ones life. While he still has a fair bit of growth to go before he can jump behind the wheel of a car, fight for his country, vote for his leaders, put a Benjamin down on the Lakers to win the title or develop any other bad “grown up” habits, he still gets a pretty sweet step up in daily life at 3.

For one, his toy possibilities grow by about 200%. Whether it’s that he can easily now have toys listed as 3+ (which seems to be a boat load) or that we are more likely to let him have one that is 4+ or 5+ now, there are definitely more options. He’s been talking for a while now but his imagination has definitely been taken up a notch or two in the last month or so. He love’s to play freeze tag and hide and seek, even though he does not fully get the concept of “hiding”. When he hides, he usually just goes and stands next to a wall and giggles while we try and pretend that we don’t hear or see him. When we say “Jayden, where are you?” he giggles and replies “I don’t know, hehehe”. He also is a big fan of playing “grocery store” with his new cash register (the “money pinger”). At the moment he likes being the “shopping man” and dad or mom being the “grocery man” that scans all the items and takes his money. He also may start going to some sort of pre-school some time this year. There are several places around us that provide part time schooling for a few hours a day, a couple days a week at a reasonable price. Of course there is also potty training. We’ve been half heartedly working with him the last few months but will soon be going at it full force.

Better toys, new games, school and the loo! That’s quite a bit!!

Ok, well onto the festivities. His actual birthday fell on a Tuesday this year so dad took the day off of work and we headed to Chuck E. Cheese (a favorite of his, of course). Turns out Tuesday mornings at opening time is the perfect time to go because no one is really there yet!! (Yeah for mom and dad!!). We brought a few presents for him to open and much fun was had. He got to meet Chuck E. and had plenty of coins to plop into whatever machines he wished. We had amassed quite a number of tickets from previous outings and we added a bunch more this time (1300 total!). When it came time to leave we showed him all the cool toys he could pick from. He decided he just had to have this certain item and he would not be convinced otherwise no matter how hard mom and dad tried. What did he want? A mini Tootsie-pop, orange flavor, for 10 tickets. Oh to be 3… :)

After we left the mouse house, we went home and all took a nap. After nap time we decided to take him out to a birthday dinner at the mall. We went to Claim Jumper and had a yummy dinner. He got a special birthday cupcake that he enjoyed very much.

The next day, he had his two best buds come over for cake and ice cream!!

The next day, Thursday, we headed for Portland to see family for a long birthday/fathers day weekend. We started by going to grandma Smith’s house in McMinnville. Jayden had a blast playing out in the yard. He helped grandma water her plants, played hide-and-seek, and rode his little scooter around the grass. On the second day we went to this great big park next to were they live (sorry, no pics, forgot our camera). He had a blast playing on all the jungle gym stuff, in the sand, in the water jets and on his little scooter. Of course he loved playing with the dogs at the house and in his little room that grandma has set up for him.

On Saturday we all went over to grandma Shervey’s house for his big Transformers themed birthday party. Uncle Jon and Aunt Heather came over too and an unhealthy amount of spoiling ensued. :) The following day was Fathers Day but we ended up just relaxing and not doing too much, the week had worn out mom and dad. We did go to a cool little park when we had a break in the weather where Jayden got to play with one of his favorite playground toys, the scooper!!

We headed back the following Monday. We stopped at our friends, Chris and Tiffany, to see their little one, Sydney, and introduce her to Jayden (is there a future marriage in the works?? We shall see). Unfortunately, the little man was worn out and just wanted to go home (he was asleep 10 minutes after we left), so the visit was a short one :)

The following week Jayden had his 3 year check up appointment. We found out he was a perfect square, 39x39!! 39 pounds (90th percentile) and 39 inches tall (95th percentile). A big growth spurt in the last year!!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Monsters vs Aliens

Being a rather big movie buff myself, I looked forward to the time I could take Jayden to the movies with me. I was not sure exactly when this would happen I just knew knew it would, some day....

So they started airing commercials for this movie over a month ago and ever since Jayden has been foaming at the mouth every time he sees one. After said commercial would end he would squeal out either "I go see, I go see!" or "Monnnnsterrrrrrs" or some version of "We go Target" (to buy it). Add that to that the fact that the Golden Arches is dropping a little Monsters vs Aliens plastic nugget into every kids meal and it quickly became apparent that we may "need" to go see this movie with him.

After reading several reviews online from parents that took their 3 year olds I was convinced it would not scare the daylights out of him and we decided we would give it a go and take him to his first movie.

So all three of us headed to the 10:30am showing at the mall. We got there a little early to get good seats and wasted a little time by the arcade machines. We went and got some popcorn and one of the "kids" boxes for the little man, he was very excited. He got to hold the tickets and gave them to the nice man when he was supposed too.

We walked into the theater and it was cool to see how he reacted; Stopping to stare at the "big tv" for a minute, telling me "it's darrk", looking at a new kind of chair he had never seen with seat that flipped up and down, oh and look a cup holder for my drink too.

The movie had been out for several weeks by this time and there were only a handful of other families in the theater, perfect. After he got settled and figured out how to keep from being "folded up" in the chair he was good to go. Also very excited that he got to have his own Sprite, little box of popcorn, some fruit snacks and his blankie. He looked pretty darn cute (sorry, to dark for cell phone pics).

After what seemed like 6-7 previews, after each Jayden would say "I want watch Monsters now please", the movie finally started. It was a little slow for the first 10 minutes and I wondered if it was going to hold his attention but soon after the chick gets hit by an asteroid, grows 50ft, the action kicked in and he was glued to it for the next 90 minutes. He did great and kept quite for the most part. When he would let out a yip of excitement or ask a question I would lean over and tell him "We have to use our quite voices in here ok" and he would lean over and whisper back "ok, ...." and repeat whatever he had just said, cute. One time it was rather funny when a character walked into a huge, silent, empty room and said "HELLO!?!??" to which Jayden of course offered "Hello!". He was a big fan of the giant "fuzzy" monster and the little blue blob guy too.

He was all tuckered out by the movies end, asking to go home in the last 90 seconds or so of the movie because he wanted a nap. Mom packed up our stuff, I slung him over my shoulder and we headed for home.


Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Ghost Baby

This is completely true.

Not long after we brought Jayden home from the hospital we hooked up our fancy baby monitor and thought it was pretty sweet. It not only had sound but a little video screen in the receiver so we could see the little guy at night.

After a few weeks of using the monitor we started to notice that it would crackle and the image would go fuzzy every now and then. We figured that it was due to some sort of wireless interference and thought nothing of it until one day we saw something that scared the ba-jeez-uz out of us.

That night we turned off the lights and slipped into bed as usual. The monitor started to act up so we tried to reposition it to get a better signal and then we saw him...the Ghost Baby. Jaydens image shifted, bent and went to static when suddenly a completely different image appeared. An image of small child was suddenly crystal clear on the screen. He shifted a little as if it knew we were watching him and then the image shuttered back to Jayden's room. Not much sleep was had that night.

We saw him several times after that, always laying there peacefully and and sometimes staring back at us. Then suddenly one day he was gone, never too appear again. Months went by and we forgot about the Ghost Baby and then I was going though our pictures the other day and saw this..........

He may still be with us.....

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Friday, January 16, 2009

My Fellow Friends on the Bus

Oh how I love the public transit system. Where else would you find such a mix of personalities. A mix that would never be found in another kind of gathering. Anyone that has ridden a bus, train, trolley, ferry or the like will know what I'm talking about.

You do have some generally friendly people that are not over bearing and pleasant to small talk too. People you recognize as "regulars" for the given time slot, heading off to do whatever it is that they do. But I would say 90% of the people fall into the following categories.

You have the loud talkers that seem to think everyone wants to know that "Joey is starting the 5th grade!!" or "Sally is such a lousy boss". Of course 60% of these conversations take place on cell phones.

You have the people that get on the bus with their head phones on and sit silently on the ride and get off the bus in the same way. That would be me most days, kind of anti social, I know. And of course the opposite of that is the people that think you want share in their love of JZ, 50 Cent or Jewl.

There are the the book readers who of course hate anyone that makes a peep because they must be commuting on public transit for "quite time".

You have teenagers, well, being teenagers.

You have the bike riders that load up their bike and proceed to get on the bus with a helmet, over sized back back, bike saddle bags, one of those giant indestructible water bottles and wearing shorts in bellow 40 degree weather.

You've got the poor sucker trying to make it to the bus stop or train station with 3 suit cases and some times 3 kids and only one open seat. Since they are neither handicapped or elderly it's a 50/50 on weather the people in the front will get up and let them have the "big spots".

Lastly you have the crazies. The creepy guys that talk to them selves or even worse want to talk to you about the people talking to them, in there head. REALLY Drunk guys (I've seen a guy shot-gun half a bottle of vodka after stepping on the bus and finding a seat). Weird couples that talk about the most vile subject matter or seem like they literally were on the bus to get to auditions for some new Jeff Foxworthy reality show. After they get off the bus we of course instantly start talking about how weird that was and then share stories of other crazies we have each encountered.

I had one of the crazies sit next to me today, a talker. Most of the time I'll pretend I have narcolepsy or just put my headphones on and become one of the "share my music/TV" with others as I turn it up loud enough to drown out the "preaching" of my fellow rider. But today both of those were thwarted. I could not feign narcolepsy because when the heater in the bus came on is sounded like a 747 taking off, so I was fooling no one with that one. It was a no go for headphones either as I realized I did not plug my phone in last night and could not listen to music or watch TV and still hope to make it though the day.

So there I sat, listening and nodding at the stream of conscious being yelled out by this deranged individual, hoping that maybe he would feel better because someone was listening today.

Ah yes, these folks, these are my fellow friends on the bus.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas Everyone

Just a quick note to say Merry Christmas to everyone. We hope that you all have a wonderful day.

Wanted to post a few pictures and videos of our day. Jayden was very much into Christmas this year and was very excited that Santa made his way to our house. Hope you enjoy the pics/movies.

Sorry, had to split the movies into 3 parts. Supposed to be one 13min video, but the web site I host pic's and vid's on has a 5min limit per video. So just watch them in order to get the same effect :)

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Getting some Joy out of the Constant Snow Flakes

In case you have been under a rock the last week, it has been dumping snow up here in the great north west. Over the past week we have gotten over a foot of snow in Everett and 8" in downtown Seattle. For a place with lots of steep hills and annual snow fall is just under 3" that's a heck of a lot!! Of course that means most are not prepared for driving in it and that ends up causing wrecks, delays and all kinds of issues. In fact the last three bus rides I have taken (or tried to take) I have waited a total of 5 hours for the bus!

On the bright side I have "had" to stay home for the better part of a week and we have gotten out and enjoyed the snow as much as we could. Jayden seems to really like the snow and this is the first year he could really get out and play in it. Unfortunately the snow that fell was a real soft powder and not very good for making snow men, but mom did manage to snag the last sled from RiteAid and we had lots of fun with that. Hope you enjoy the pic's.

Monday, October 20, 2008

JPMorgan Chase

Sorry for not posting for so long. As you may have heard WaMu got purchased a few weeks back by JPMorgan Chase. Actually they did not get purchased, the FDIC seized WaMu after 19bln dollars in deposits walked out the door in TWO WEEKS and auctioned off our remaining 300bln in assets to the highest bidder, which was JPMorgan Chase with a winning bid of 1.9bln. I'm not an economist but that sounds like a rather sweet deal.

I feel for any of you that had WaMu stock, as I did. It instantly became worthless when this all went down. Technically not completely worthless, I got to sell it for around 9 cents. I think I'll take that money and buy everyone in my office a double cheeseburger from the McDonnell's value menu.

As for my job and what not, that is kind of up in the air. I can't share to many details at this point but I will know by Dec 1st how it will all shake out and of course then you shall know (all 3 of you!). For what it's worth the JPM folks have treated us more than fairly and based on info we have been given no matter what happens in the next few weeks, no one is getting to be treated badly regardless of what happens to a persons specific job.

Thanks to everyone for their support and well wishes the last few weeks. Take care.

* Site Note * - I had been holding off posting anything because A) We have been completely overwhelmed and busy the last 3 weeks, with this job news only one of a dozen things going on and B) I wanted to post something about this before I posted about anything else going on. Look for lots more posts soon! Or one mega one.