SJ on the Move

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Chicago, Day 3

Today Nathan had to go to his conference so SJ and I spent the day together. Our first stop was the playground we found on our first day. This time, however, there was a little squirrel who wouldn't leave us alone. It would come right up to SJ's stroller and beg for food. We kept having to shoo him away, but he kept coming back. SJ was a little freaked out and I must admit I was a little, too. It's so unusual for a squirrel to get so close. So, after about 20 min of being tormented by the squirrel we left. We walked though Millenium Park enjoying the reflecting cloud (aka, "the bean") and the wading fountain. In the afternoon we checked out the roof top deck and hot tub at our apartment. The hot tub was nice and cool so SJ was able to enjoy "swimming" around in that. We then enjoyed lounging on the chairs in the grass and enjoying the great views of the city and Lake Michigan. That night we headed back to the wading fountion, this time with swimsuit donned so SJ could enjoy it properly.

The begging squirel

The center building with the slanted roof was in the movie Adventures in Babysitting. In my opinion one of the funniest movies ever! Our apartment building was right behind it.

The reflecting cloud.

Will the real slim SJ please stand up?

Practicing ballet in the wading fountain.

Swimming in in the roof top hot tub, which was this day quite tepid. The next few days the water heater was on and it was really hot. Too hot for SJ so we had to sit on the step with just our feet in the water. It was nice to have a little oasis available to us so we could get away from the hustle and bustle of the city for a while.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Chicago, Day 2

Friday was another great day. We all went to the Shedd Aquarium and spent most of the morning there. SJ wanted to see the sharks the most and she sat down and watched them for quite some time. That afternoon we headed to Navy Pier for some fun. It had just finished raining so the pier was still quiet. We got to ride the 16 storey ferris wheel and try out the lighthouse ride (picture to be posted later!)

On the Ferris Wheel

At Navy Pier

Watching the Zebra Sharks

Having a chat with Bob Newhart

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Chicago, Day 1

We arrived in Chicago and went to our hotel/apartment. It wasn't ready for us to check in so we headed out in search of a playground for SJ. She kept saying, "Where is the playground?" after every 10 feet of walking. Finally we had to ask a stranger and we picked one with a 4 year old boy int ow. Thankfully they directed us to one and SJ enjoyed running around for about 2 hours! We headed back to the apartment and checked in. The apartment was 1200 square feet! Pretty big! There were 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a full kitchen, living room and washer/dryer. SJ was very excited to have her own big, princess, bed! That night we got a Chicago classic pizza and enjoyed dinner at our apartment.

SJ enjoying her big bed!

The living area

Enjoying a Chicago deep dish stuffed pizza and salad! Being able to eat meals in the apartment was great. It meant we didn't always have to schlep a tired or cranky SJ to a restaurant.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


For all of our faithful blog checkers I must apologize for the long delay in posts. We've had a very busy 2 weeks. My parents came to visit 2 weeks ago and as I mentioned earlier we put them to work with may tasks including painting more at the Arlington house. Finally the living room and dining room blend in with the rest of the house. There has also been great progress on the attic projcet as you can see in the pictures below. We are really thinking we can move in July. I can't get too excited since I've been saying this pretty much on a monthly basis since January. Nathan and his Dad have been doing back breaking work installing the new wood floor in the family room. It's not totally done, but it's a start. This weekend we get a little break from house work since we're headed to Chicago for a little trip. I'm sure we'll have more fun and exciting pictures not only our adventures in the Windy City, but also of the house in 6 more days! But for now.....

Day 2: ripped up old flooring and outside shingles off!

Day 3: some new sub floor

Day 7: the dormer framed out! This is where the bathroom and the master bedroom well be. These contractors seem to be moving along quite well!

How Nathan spent his Memorial Day weekend

Thursday, May 15, 2008

It has begun! (finally!)

Today marks the day when FINALLY work has begun on the 3rd floor attic project. We are very excited and just praying that everything goes well and that there are no major (or minor, for that matter) problems! More pictures will be forthcoming as work progresses.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Let's Go Fly a Kite!

SJ and I enjoyed an afternoon of kite flying on Mother's Day. We went to Millenium Park in West Roxbury. It used to be a landfill and several years ago the city of Boston filled in, planted grass and put in a great playground, lots of soccer fields and biking and walking paths. The best part about this park is that it's great for kites. Because it's so high up there is always a great wind. It actually makes kite flying a little boring. You really just have to hold it. There's no chasing wind to keep the kite up.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

SJ and Grandpa

SJ (along with the rest of us) is enjoying an impromptu visit from her Grandma and Grandpa. We've put Grandma and Grandpa to work with all kinds of tasks: cooking, cleaning, planting flowers, raking leaves/sticks, and grocery shopping. Thankfully they do it all joyfully and enjoy getting to spend lots of time with SJ.

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Four Little Bears, a folktale

Once upon a time in the land of West Roxbury a baby was to be born. A very kind lady thought it would be so nice to give the baby a cute blanket bear before she was born. The baby's mother kindly accepted this gift to bestow to the baby after she was born. For four months the mother waited for the baby to be ready for this gift then finally she was ready. She began to swaddle the baby and cuddle her next to the Bear for sleeping time. Soon, the precious baby began to associated the Bear with sleeping and would sleep quite well with her lovey.

Not long later the mother realized how attached the baby was getting to her Bear and she began to wonder how she would keep the Bear clean. The Bear's tag warned only to hand wash very gently, however, the new mother realized that hand washing was not enough to really clean the Bear and was very unrealistic for a new mom anyway as she often did not have enough time for sleep let alone hand washing of a Bear. So the mother debated what to do. She decided to go on a Bear hunt and try to catch a brand new pink blanket Bear so if the original Bear didn't make it through the washing machine she would have a substitute for her precious baby. Thankfully she found a new Bear AND the original Bear was saved. Thus arrived to the family a second Bear.

The mother thought baby's Bear was such a great gift that she decided to bestow a Bear on another little girl to be born. However, this time the Bear hunt was more stressful for the Bear's maker had decided to change its design and she knew the new design would not be satisfactory to her baby. She needed to act quickly and she was able to catch 3 more Bears, but that was the end of the blanket Bear - no more would ever be made. She gave one Bear to the other baby girl yet to be born and put the 2 other Bears in hibernation until they were needed by her own child.

The baby loved her 2 Bears so well that the mother decided to introduce a new Bear. She figured it would be a replacement and she could put the two tired and well loved Bears into hibernation. However, the baby decided she wanted to have three. So, a Bear family was born. Each Bear was named - Daddy bear to the original Bear who subsequently lost his bow and looked more manly, Mama Bear to be a mate to the Daddy, and finally Girl Bear. Each Bear was also loved and at certain time preferred over the others. The baby was quite content with her three Bears and her mother knew there would always be one more just in case on of the Bears didn't make it.

One sunny day not that long ago the mother was doing household tasks while the baby, now grown into a toddler was at her side. The mother unknowingly lead the toddler to the Bear's hibernation cave and the toddler discovered the smooth, brand new Bear. The toddler was unable to resist the new Bear and she just HAD to have it join the family. Thus, 'Smooth Bear' arrived. The toddler loved Smooth Bear the best of all. The mother quietly placed Daddy Bear, Mama Bear and Girl Bear back in the hibernation cave and Smooth Bear became the girl's beloved.

Smooth Bear stuck by the toddler as she grew into a little girl. Bear continues to be there at night, when the girl gets hurt or sick, and travels with the girl in the car. Bear is a good and loyal friend.

The other Bears do come out of their cave every now and then, especially to fill-in for Smooth if she has to go through the laundry. But, Smooth continues to be the girl's most beloved and together they will live happily ever after.

Pictured Left to Right: Daddy Bear, Mama Bear, Girl Bear, and Smooth Bear.
The girl and her beloved, Smooth Bear

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Showing Kindness

Today SJ and I went to Clover's birthday party at her cottage on the beach. During cake time SJ started to take care of Clover - wiped her face, fed her cake, poured her a cup of juice. Thankfully Clover liked all the attention and had a great laugh when SJ wiped her face!

Unfortunately, the weather was a bit gray and damp, but SJ enjoyed walking along the rocky coast and throwing shells into the water.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Dancing feet

Every Thursday SJ participates in her PlayDance Ballet class. She seems to have a bunch of fun. PlayDance starts out with having all the kids on a large blanket on the floor. There are ballet books, puzzles and little games they can play with for about 10 min. At that point the parents leave and the kids stay with the teacher for a little over an hour. About 1/2 way through they have a juice break and a story time. The last 5 minutes of the class the parents are invited back in to watch their child do a little show, take a bow, and get a sticker.