Monday, December 22, 2008

A recent Nora-ism

Nora has been speaking out against affectionate nicknames recently. Hardly a day goes past when she reminds me, "I'm Nora!"

It usually goes something like this. We'll be in the car and,

Nora: Mommy, I want a snack!
Me: It's almost time for lunch.
Nora: I want a snack!
Me: Babe, we'll be home in just a minute.
Nora: I not babe, I'm Nora!

We also have a little game we like to play. Since she's been very little, I've called her my "Bits." I started out calling her "Little Bit," but that wasn't right, so the nickname evolved and had several incarnations before we settled on Bits or the Bits. It sounds really cheesy when I type it out, but aren't most nicknames are like that?

Me: Are you my pits?
Nora: No!
Me: Are you my spits?
Nora: No!
Me: My bots? Spots? Pots? Are you my knits?
Nora: No! I your Bits!

From what I gather, it's okay to call her Bits, but she's not too crazy about honey, sweetie, baby, etc. I'll try to keep that in mind.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


We can't believe it, but it's time to think about preschool. We want to start Nora at 3, and since her birthday is in August, she'll be starting right before or after her third birthday. The ones around here do tours and open houses in January and enroll in February, so that means we will be doing some shopping around in the next month or so. There's also a question of waiting lists and things like that, but I'm not worried about that right now.

These are a few of the ones we want to consider.

The Children's Garden

Druid Hills United Methodist Preschool
First Decatur United Methodist Preschool
Preschool at the Heights

A couple of them sound more interesting to me than others, but I'm really getting ahead of myself because I know I'll learn so much from attending the open houses and meeting the teachers, etc. Jason doesn't have much of an opinion on it at all right now but knowing us I see a comparison spreadsheet in our future.

There is a part of me that is really excited about this for Nora. Even 9 months before fall 2009 I can predict that she will thrive in a school setting. On the other hand, it feels like she's growing up so fast. I regret that she will always be one of if not the youngest in her class (thinking ahead to elementary school and beyond now), but that's just where her birthday falls. As for starting her in preschool at 3, that seems the natural thing to do to me as my sister and I both started at that age and it seems like the trend in Atlanta is to start children even earlier, at 2. In the end I'm sure it will all work out fine. I have to say, it makes me feel very "parental" to be facing these kind of decisions. I know I make parental decisons all day every day, but choosing a school for my child just seems so much bigger than choosing what vegetables she'll be having with her dinner.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

Yep, looks a lot like Christmas around here. Good thing since it's less than a week away. How did this happen? I swear it crept up on me even faster than usual this year, even though I did most of my shopping over a month ago. We've had about a dozen unopened UPS packages sitting on our guest bed for weeks now. This week I've been opening the boxes, sorting what's what (I had to consult my list as I'd forgotten what I bought for some people!) and wrapping things. The good news about waiting this long to wrap is that, if you go to Party City, they have adorable gift bags and they're 50% off. The bad news is that I have company coming to town in four days and let's just say there's a lot to get done between now and then. Wrapping is probably the least of it.

I even braved Ikea and Target today to pick up "a few last minute items," which turned into a shopping spree the likes of which I have never seen before. Seriously, I don't think I have ever seen a total as high as my total at Target today, outside of purchasing major appliances. Needless to say, we are very grateful to be able to afford to buy gifts for all of our friends and family, especially knowing how so many others are struggling this year. We feel very, very blessed to have such a happy and healthy family.

On tap for this week: church tomorrow (Jason playing the Christmas cantata), though Nora and I might stay home because she was sick today, we'll see; wrapping galore; massive planning and shopping for Christmas dinner; hosting some friends for dinner Monday night; Christmas Eve services and dinner with my parents Wednesday night; Thursday is Christmas! Woohoo! Oh, and I may have to take Nora in to the pediatrician because of her illness. I suspect an ear infection. Somehow in all of this we would still like to do the Pink Pig, and I really want to take Nora to skate at Centennial Olympic Park, although I'm not sure how that will work since neither one of us is much of an ice skater. I mean, I'll get out there and give it a go, I just don't know how much help I will be to Nora when she needs it. We're heading to Pensacola Saturday or Sunday, I'm not sure which yet, but we're looking forward to seeing everyone there.

Ho ho ho! See most of you soon!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Visit to Santa

As you can see by the above picture, we saw Santa today! I'd meant to do this for the past two years, but this is the first time I actually made it happen. It's just as well. This is the first year she cared a bit about Santa/Christmas/etc.

Today was not a typical day for us. I want to say that because I'm about to tell about our visit to Santa and it was really out of character for Nora. She is usually really good natured and LOVES strangers. So much so that it scares me sometimes. I always worry that she would happily walk off with someone she had never met before. Since she has become 2 she has become a little more cautious/clingy, which is not a bad thing in my opinion.

This morning she woke up on the wrong side of the bed, so to speak. We had Music Class this morning and it was a big struggle to get out the door. A tantrum was involved. She did okay at Music Class and at lunch (mostly), but when it was time to see Santa I asked her if she wanted to meet him and she said, "No!" This was when we were at the mall and not even near Santa yet. I was really surprised because we'd been talking about Santa and how he brings presents and toys. We just set up the Christmas tree last night and she was totally digging it.

Even though she said she didn't want to meet Santa, I took him to his "workshop" anyway. No one else was around and the man working was really sweet. He waved to her from his couch, then he came down and talked to her from behind the rope. He asked her what she wanted for Christmas and she said, "Presents, with wrapping paper," which is her standard answer. She's not too concerned about what kind of presents she gets as long as they involve wrapping paper. He gave her some stickers, then Santa showed us some of his set-up. He pointed out a dog and a kitty that were part of the display. Nora liked that.

After she got comfortable, she agreed to sit on Santa's lap for a little bit and we got some pictures. I was happy with how they turned out and I also shelled out for a frame, which I will keep and use every year. We don't decorate much but Nora seems to enjoy the things we do do. It's so nice to experience all of the joy of the holiday through the eyes of a two year old.

So, I don't know what was up with Miss Nora today, but we survived our visit to Santa and we got a nice picture out of it. We also took her to a drive-around light show tonight and she LOVED it.

Merry Christmas to all!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Another week is gone....

The weeks go by so quickly. There are a bunch of friends I keep meaning to make plans with. We still have to put up the Christmas tree. We want to take Nora to ride on the Pink Pig at Lenox Mall (an Atlanta holiday tradition) and to see Santa Claus, and to get some pictures made in one of her holiday dresses.... I need to make a list or something.

We're home sick from church this morning. I was looking forward to a few things that were happening this morning and I ended up missing those things. Nora and I had a stomach bug yesterday that also kept us home from a Christmas party we had been planning to attend. Bummer. With luck we'll both be feeling better by tomorrow and we can have a normal, productive week.

We got a new neighbor this week! We're very excited about this because the house, which is right next door to us (as well as several other houses in our general vicinity), has been empty the entire three years we've lived here. I met the guy who is moving in and he seems really nice. He bought the house for a song and I think he got an amazing deal considering the fact that it's about the same size as our house and, like ours, has been recently renovated. (It's also rather depressing to think about what his amazing deal does for our home value, but let's be like Scarlett O'Hara and think about that another day.) We also have new neighbors (renters, I think) across the street that I haven't met yet, and another recently renovated house that may be occupied soon. I'm feeling really optimistic about all of this. We had hoped to be in another house and another neighborhood by now, but with the market the way it is I think we'll be here another couple of years, at least. Our neighborhood association seems to finally be getting legs and that's a really positive thing, too.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Goodbye, November!

I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving! We had a great time in Pensacola. We got to see a lot of people, although as always there were a few we missed, and we stayed very busy. We went to two Thanksgiving dinners on Thursday and did only a little bit of shopping on Friday. We also celebrated Jason's 31st birthday with an ice cream cake from Marble Slab. It was weird! 90% ice cream and 10% cake.

The next month is definitely going to be busy. We're almost done purchasing Christmas presents, but we have a lot to do around the house, a few holiday get-togethers to attend, baking to do, and planning for our Christmas dinner which we'll be hosting for the first time ever. I've done Thanksgiving here before, but never Christmas. Of course I had help before and I'll have it again (my mom and sister will be here), but still! Planning to be done!

We told Nora about Santa Claus, so she is vaguely excited about this whole Christmas thing, although she has no idea what to expect. It's fun to see her work it all out in her head.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Happy fall!

Originally uploaded by eblairj
We just got back from a very relaxing week in the North Georgia mountains with the Johnson family. Bill and Debby came up from Florida and Lacey and Rob came from South Carolina. Nora and I were there all week; Jason managed to spend most of the week there but came back and worked a couple of days in the middle of the week.

We have been traveling quite a bit lately. We went to Sandestin for my birthday in August; spent a week in Mobile, Alabama in September; flew to Connecticut and drove back with Jessie and her family in early October; and then the mountains in November. We've been back for a little less than a week, but we're already gearing up to head to Pensacola for Thanksgiving. We're hoping to visit with a bunch of friends and get to see a lot of our Glass relatives, whom we don't get to see as frequently. Nora can't wait for December when she will get to visit with her MeMe (who lives in Washington state right now) in Pensacola. She loves talking to her MeMe on the phone and just recently received a cool stained glass coloring book from her in the mail!

Nora just finished up a session of Music Class. We've been going for about a year and she is just nuts about it. This session she had some very clear favorite songs, including one called "Johnny Giraffe" (luckily Mommy and Daddy like that one, too). We're going to sign up for the next session, which begins in December. We're also hoping to do swim lessons again soon. I am volunteering with a couple of organizations (and socializing a lot, too) and Jason is still enjoying his job - and particularly the success and stability of his company in light of recent economic events. Recently we have really been loving and appreciating our awesome church and all that it has to offer. Our family stays really busy and we're always having fun. We are definitely blessed.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Mid-August Update

Originally uploaded by eblairj
This weekend is Nora's birthday! We're all very excited and busy planning her party. It's going to be a Musikgarten class for all the kids, then we'll serve snacks and a cake at a nearby Mexican restaurant. Nora will proudly tell anyone who asks that she is going to be TWO!

She recently discovered singing. She likes to sing and she has favorite songs that she requests. When she sings, it goes something like this.

Tinkle tinkle... stah
Up... world so high! Diamond! Sky!
Tinkle tinkle... Merrily merrily!

(That "Merrily merrily" at the end is a request to start up with "Row, Row, Row Your Boat.")

In other news, I (Blair) will be turning 30 in a couple of weeks. Oh my!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

All about Nora

I promised to make a post about the things Nora has been doing and saying lately. She turned 23 months on July 18, so she is headed full speed ahead towards her second birthday! We have been talking to her about birthdays and trying to explain that hers is coming up, but I'm not quite sure she gets it yet. A friend of hers, Ruby, had her first birthday party a couple of weeks ago and that's probably been Nora's most memorable experience with a birthday so far. She thought that was really neat and I'm sure she will love her own party when it happens in a few weeks.

I think that Nora's a great little communicator. I'd say that I understand her the best since I spend the most time with her. She can express most of her basic wants and needs and usually speaks in 2-4 word sentences. She'll say things like, "Yo Yo Baby (yogurt) yummy, Mommy!" or "Car seat hot, no!" She likes going to church and knows that's where we're "Quiet, shh!" although actually being quiet in church is more of a challenge. She has a whole cast of characters she plays with at home, mostly stuffed animals. She has names for all of them, but with a few exceptions the names are pretty simple - Pig ("Peeg!"), Rabbit, Bunny, Baby, etc. Puppy Knee is a stuffed puppy she got from Build a Bear a few months ago. She also has Mommy Puppy Sam-u-el, which is my old toy, Samuel Spaniel. One night last week she woke up screaming "Mommy Puppy Sam-u-ellllll!" over and over again. Jason went in to her room, changed her diaper, and found MPS and gave him back to her. This was the wrong thing to do because she freaked out. I think she'd actually had a bad dream about MPS, but she couldn't really explain that to us. We brought her to our room and she spent the rest of the night with us, sleeping peacefully.

Another thing she's been doing recently that I think is neat is recognizing places out of the car window when we're driving. She can point out the library (and she knows that's where we go to get books), the church, home, and Daddy's work. She has also recognized places, like my grandmother's house, in photos. She loves looking at pictures and will ask to see pictures of "No' baby" (she still can't pronounce "Nora") with some of her favorite people. She loves books and has a nice collection now, plus we take a few books out from the library every week. Some of her current favorites are Yoko, Flora's Blanket, Hop on Pop ("Hop Pop!"), and Goodnight Moon. I was pretty stubborn about not letting her watch TV when she was younger, but I have been letting her watch some shows on PBS Kids lately. Her favorites seem to be Super Why, Curious George, and Between the Lions.

Brag time: she started learning her ABCs in mid-April and had them down by the end of May. She can now point to any capital letter of the alphabet and name it, and recently she's started to learn the lowercase letters. We simply checked out a book from the library about the ABCs and she got very interested right away, wanting to read the book over and over again until she had learned them all. She can do a little bit of the ABC song, but she's not much of a singer right now. She's starting to learn to say her numbers; we've heard her go up to six or eight, but I don't think she really understands "counting" yet. She's also starting to learn the sounds that letters make, like "Buh" for B, etc. Like all parents, we are very proud of our little girl! It's so fun to watch her learn more about the world. You often hear about the "terrible twos," and there are definite times of frustration for Mommy, Daddy, and Nora. We get tantrums sometimes, and she seems to have inherited a stubborn streak from one or maybe both of her parents. :) But overall, we are really enjoying having a toddler. She brings us so much joy, every single day. We are so glad that Nora is our daughter.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

July 2008

It's been a busy summer! It's not over yet, but let's talk about what the Glass fam has been up to so far.

The summer started off with a bang when my parents visited for Memorial Day Weekend. My dad joined me in running/walking my second 5K, the Save Our Skin 5K at Perimeter Center here in Atlanta. I did my first race in April, and shaved about a minute off of my time at the Save Our Skin. I am still doing far more walking than running (and my "running" is very slow!), but I feel like I am making progress. I had originally hoped to do one race a month, but got a little gunshy when it got REALLY hot here in Georgia. (Who would've thought that summers would be hot in Atlanta?) I have my eye on another race for mid-August, and I am looking forward to fall weather when I can really start enjoying the outdoors again.

The weekend after my parents visited, my best friend Jessie came to town with her eleven month old daughter, Penelope. We were totally thrilled to see Jessie and Penelope. They live in Connecticut for now and we hadn't seen them since Nora and I visited the Emersons in August 2007. Unfortunately, all of us moms and kids were sick for the better part of the weekend, but we still managed to have a good time just enjoying each other's company. Jason mostly escaped illness, but Nora and I ended up having cold symptoms for the better part of two weeks.

We have stayed busy with activities. Nora took swim lessons at the YMCA in June and she did really well! She put her face in the water and learned to blow bubbles and "kick kick kick!" Sometimes she practices in the bathtub at home. We took a break from lessons in July since we knew we would be busy with other things, but I think we are going to continue in the fall because she learned so much in such a short amount of time, I want to keep the momentum going. We have attended a lot of fun playgroups with friends this summer. We also discovered Leapin' Lizards, the local "bouncy place" as we call it, which Nora loves. We bought the "Toddler Express" card so we will probably be going there a lot. We are on a break from The Music Class for the summer, but we will start back up in August. Nora saw (part of) her first movie in the theater, a free showing of The Bee Movie. We didn't stay for the whole thing, but it was fun! Finally, we attended Vacation Bible School at our church, Druid Hills United Methodist. Nora was the youngest of the 6 attendees (we're a small church!) and she had a great time. The kids will be performing some of the songs they learned in church on Sunday. Nora doesn't really sing yet, but sometimes she does the hand motions!

We visited Mobile and Pensacola around the 4th of July. We had a great time seeing friends and family, but we weren't able to see everybody we wanted to see. We did get to go to the beach, and Nora loved it! It was a beautiful, calm day and we sat at the edge of the water and played in the sand. She has been talking about it ever since. On the 4th, Nora's grandparents had a cookout and we went to see the fireworks at Bayfront. The fireworks were beautiful, but I think Nora enjoyed running around on the green lawn in front of the Gulf Power building more than she enjoyed the show.

In mid-July, my other best friend, Dara, visited with her family. It was a short trip, but we got to go out to dinner one night and have family time the next morning. We are looking forward to seeing all of them again when they come up for Nora's birthday party next month! I also saw my Columbus, GA-based friend Rebecca one afternoon. I can't believe I've known Rebecca for 10 years now! We met when we started at Barnes & Noble in 1998. We're hoping to see Rebecca again next month, too.

This post has gotten really long. Later, I'll try to post about some of the cute things Nora has been doing and saying lately.

Welcome to our blog!

Originally uploaded by eblairj
Here we are! We Glass family members decided it would be a good idea to start a blog so we could keep in touch with our out-of-state friends and family members.

It's likely that I (Blair) will be writing most of the posts, but Jason has the ability to contribute, too, and I hope that he will. We won't be posting many pictures here; we're still using Flickr and updating at least once a week or so. At Flickr we have the ability to control the privacy settings on our photos. If you'd like to become our contact on Flickr, please email one of us and we will send you an invitation.

Thanks for reading, and check back soon!