Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Hurricane Irene

Seana and I try to do some sort of sight seeing every weekend.  This past weekend was reserved for Rhode Island's Misquamicut beach which was recommended by a reader of our blog and a trip into New York City to see the MOMA (Museum of Modern Art).  

Well as the world knows, the weather had a different plan for us.  One that involved buying water and non-perishable food items and staying in. Our little apartment in Trumbull was in the path of the eye of Hurricane Irene.

We were blessed that it downgraded to a tropical storm before reaching us and even more blessed to some how not get hit with the violent winds and torrential down pours... we never lost our power and didn't sustain any damage from downed trees.  We made the most of our time in.  We watched some redbox movies and streamed some shows on Hulu ate popcorn and S'mores!

Much of Connecticut was not as lucky, most lost power including a couple spots I had hoped to take Maggie on Monday.  I attempted to visit the Zoo which was closed and then the Stepping Stones Childrens Museum also closed due to power outages... so we played in a playground instead.

The power outages affected some well into the week, I tried to take Maggie to Baby Bebop on Tuesday but the library it is held at still had no power.  Thankfully the Zoo was back in business and we had a place to hang out.

Hopefully this next weekend we catch up on some of the sights!

Here are a few photos of Maggie at the playground.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

And I must say.

I blog a lot about Maggie and a lot about our adventures... rarely do I blog about what is going through my head.

Believe it or not, a lot gets thrown around in there. Even now I contemplating write this blog or go to bed...

So I will attempt to keep this short.

Since we started this blog our lives have really changed... from being in Colorado to Indiana and now exploring New England while living in Connecticut. This blog started because we wanted to start trying to have a baby and now we have a beautiful little girl who is growing like crazy and keeping us super busy!

It is absolutely amazing where life takes us. I feel truly blessed to be living the life I am living. Sure I could always use a bit more spending money but in the matters of the heart and with family and friends I can't complain... well except that I wish everyone was closer to where we are!!

Speaking of... I am quite surprised at how much I am loving being on the east coast, I love all the things there are to do and how close in proximity everything is... I love the weather, I love the beaches, I love the geography! I would totally live here if our family and friends weren't SO far away!

I think we are just going to have to find a way to buy a beach house on the east coast for our summers....

Well I had intended on being deeper than this for this blog but the "go to bed" option in my mind is winning. I better turn in before Maggie stirs!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A tour of UCONN

We have decided that Maggie needs to start considering her college options... A tour at the University of Connecticut is just the place for her... Don't you think?
If you must know Audrianna is a huge UCONN basketball fan and since UCONN is only an hour and a half away I decided to surprise her with a visit/tour! So I signed her up in advance of course and we headed out Tuesday morning for her half hour information session and 90 minute tour!

Audrianna will be entering the 8th grade this year and I personally think a tour at the school she loves is a good motivator for smart decisions next year when she is a freshman in high school.

We got to see a lot of the school and even got to see the inside of the basketball stadium.

Audrianna posing with Maggie with the Husky!
After the tour we went and got UCONN Shwag at the bookstore, Audrianna got a hoodie, a t-shirt and a winter hat! I couldn't help it and also got Maggie a winter hat... once you see her in it you will know why! Plus, Audrianna is sold and wants to go to UCONN so Maggie is going to support her cousin by wearing the cutest UCONN hat ever!!!

We also went to their sports museum.. they have won A LOT!! and seeing their trophies was pretty awesome.

We ended our visit with a trip to the Dairy Bar, UCONN has an agriculture department who makes their own icecream... in 24 wonderful flavors! You would think that getting to the dairy bar would be a snap but my GPS wasn't on its game and after a missed turn here and there, it took us on a dirt road with some mud puddles and pot holes up a hill and around the corner to what felt like a place we weren't supposed to be then back to civilization right in front of the dairy bar in less than 3 minutes! It was a fun little side adventure and our car Johnny 5 strutted his stuff off road!

The surprise was a hit, and I am pleased to say that Audrianna took the visit seriously and started to ponder how she wanted to plan for her future. She already started to stress about being accepted so it was a great opportunity to talk about how to ensure you get accepted to the college of your choice by getting good grades, playing sports, being involved in as many extracurricular activities as possible and volunteering for your community... oh yeah and getting good test scores! She finished the day pumped to work for her dreams! Not a bad way to end the day if you ask me! I am so proud of her!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Two More Teeth!

I don't know if it is a good thing or a bad thing that with all the activity blogs I don't really mention Maggie's mood... Overall she is always great, never too moody... but the last week or so she has been super fussy because as you can guess she has been teething. Well after a week of including Tylenol in the bed time routine and frozen teethers during the day... those bad boys have broken through! YAY!

Maggie now has 6 teeth! 4 uppers and 2 lowers. The lowers are in plain sight at all times but her center uppers still aren't noticeable in photos, but if you let her flop back while holding her in your arms so her head dangles upside down and you make her laugh you can see them clear as day!

How many teeth does that leave for her to get???

A day in New York

We figured Audrianna's visit was a great excuse to go and see New York! Being the wonderful hosts that we are, we asked her what she wanted to see most and she said the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Believe it when I say that those 2 things can fill one day of sight seeing in our world.

Our day started with getting up at 8 and getting ready, taking the dogs out at 10ish and driving to Stamford to catch the 10:53 train into the city. The train took us to Grand Central station where we then hopped onto Subway line 4 to the bowling green, where we then walked through Battery Park to get our Liberty Cruises tickets for the 1pm boat!

Here we are waiting in the line for security, yep you are required to go through security to do the trip.
Then we were off to see Lady Liberty! Hanging inside the boat as we approached.

Once we were close to the Statue we made our way to the deck to enjoy the view!
We decided to not get off the boat at the Statue of Liberty since we really just wanted to see it, and one view of the line to get back on the boat confirmed that the view from the boat was perfect! Plus at this angle we could try to capture a pinch of the Lady's rump.

Next we stopped at Ellis Island which had a really great exhibit! Enough to side track us to forget to take photos! We did have a "pro" photo done that we purchased, once back in Indy I will probably scan it so I can post it here... Consider this spot dogeared for said photo!

The return trip was quick... Just enough time for Seana to take a self portrait with Maggie.
As we walked back to the Subway we stopped at this monument to 9/11 this globe was a piece of art near the World Trade Center that survived... tattered but still intact. Next to it a flame burns in remembrance. Crazy to think that we are just a couple weeks shy of 10 years... and I think most of us remember that day like it was yesterday.
We got back to Grand Central just in time to catch the 5:40ish train back to Stamford. I have to note that Grand Central is beautiful, and we attempted to get some photos within it but the lighting doesn't really work....

The ride back was enjoyable especially for Maggie as she took in the view.

Needless to say we didn't get back to our apartment until almost 9pm! It was a long day... and we used what felt like every mode of transportation with exception to plane in one day!!!

Monday, August 22, 2011

To the Beach with Audrianna!

My cousin Audrianna flew out for a short visit. After a long night of her flight being delayed, we opted for a laid back day with a trip to the beach. We revisited Short Beach since it is super close and well we really liked it.

It was a great start to her vacation with us!

This is a new favorite of mine of Maggie our beach baby!
Seana and Audrianna and their Shannanigans!
Audrianna and Maggie playing in the sand

Sunday, August 21, 2011

First Steps!!!

Maggie took her first steps on Thursday, August 18th, and I don't have it on video BAHH! I have been holding off to do a post so that I could include video but since Thursday she hasn't repeated her performance.

So here is the story. Maggie was playing and I had just gotten off the phone with my brother and decided to call Seana to check in with her at work. Her phone rings she picks up I say "hi" and... then "OH MY GOD... Maggie just took a step and another... she is walking!!!!" Seana is like "WHAT???!!! Really? Oh I hate work I am missing it" I of course say... "I need to find the camera" and as if Maggie heard and understood she sat down.

I spent the rest of the day with the camera within arms reach. The instant I sat it down and stepped away from it she took 3 more steps. DANG IT! I ended Thursday thinking oh well I will get it tomorrow for sure... But it is like she forgot she took those steps over night and hasn't repeated.

Right now I am the only witness to this feat... Im sure that will change soon enough and we all will have to chase her down on a regular basis!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

On our way to walking... and err climbing.

Just thought I would share this video of Maggie using a box to practice walking.

As you can see by the video she also likes to climb on things... she can successfully climb on the couch and her toddler bed... oh and this box!

Monday, August 15, 2011

East Coast Pizza~YES PLEASE!

Seana and I made a pact that we would not eat any franchised pizza while in CT... New York is known for its pizza and we assume that by proximity alone Connecticut probably has some pretty tasty pizza as well.

We were right!! And we didn't have to go far, right here in Trumbull we found Franco Gianni's and we tried the John Works pizza it has pepperoni, sausage, onions and mushrooms!

Seana enjoying a slice!
Maggie had pizza bread and mozzarella cheese YUM!
Ummm yes I did take a photo of the pie... it was that good.
While we were there, Maggie and I decided to whip our hair!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Short Beach, Stratford CT

So we decided to go visit another beach this one is only a 15 minute drive from our apartment and I have to say it was a great little beach! Since we aren't residents of Stratford we had to pay $15 to use the beach. It was well worth it!

Maggie and I played in the sand and Seana discovered that their concession stand had my favorite Nachos!!! YUMMY!

Seana and Maggie enjoying the beach!
The seagulls also like Nachos... they all were watching... yikes.
Playing in the Sand with our beach toys
Short Beach
Maggie enjoying the water

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Baby BeBop

While hanging at the pool another mom informed me of the baby bebop session that is held on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at a local library... It is free and a good time for Maggie to be around other tots!

The session is 25 minutes with nursery songs and one book reading. All in all worth the 15 minute drive! I have chosen to do this once a week with Maggie and we have gone 2 weeks! They have a 2 week break coming up but we will pick it back up into our weekly routine after the break.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Maritime Aquarium-Norwalk

There is more than one aquarium in Connecticut so we opted to check out the Norwalk Maritime Aquarium...

It is the most inexpensive aquarium we have visited yet at $12.95 per person.

When we first went in we were NOT impressed.. they chose to show their research tanks and labs so you walk down this hallway and see these shelves that showcase these small tanks.. with sharpie notes on them... We were like seriously??

But then we found the real exhibits.. they have a meerkat exhibit.. which we thought odd but they were super cute! They had a great frog exhibit, a nice shark tank and some other good exhibits. They also had a toddler play area that would have been perfect for Maggie... who slept through almost the entire thing! She woke up for the sharks and the harbor seals!

The Meerkats!
Some Fish
Shark Tank with an awake Maggie!

Monday, August 8, 2011

IKEA you are dreamy

So we spent a day at IKEA... and you can in fact spend a day there... they even have a cafeteria so you never have to leave!

We picked out an inexpensive couch and a footstool which we plan to sell used when we leave in November.

But the big news is we convinced ourselves that it was time for Maggie to have a toddler bed... not because she is ready for a toddler bed per say but because it was SO stinkin' CUTE and ON SALE!! I really shouldn't have to add to that...

We love it and will be figuring out a way to get it back to Indiana later!

Here is Maggie modeling the bed after napping in it!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Ooh a Cabinet!

Maggie's newest toy! This video was taken in the old apartment.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Apartment Swap!

Well we used our 30 day guarantee to swap apartments.. from the 1 bedroom w/ loft on the 3rd floor to a 2 bedroom on the ground level.... The 3rd level was too much for my knee and it turns out the 2 bedrooms are just nicer.. and now I don't have to keep guard of the stairs with Maggie..

In our 1 bedroom apartment I set up the gate a couple stairs up so she could "practice" doing the stairs... I don't think I mentioned this on the blog but back in June when we were packing for Chicago Maggie snuck her way to a tumble down our staircase! It was traumatic for Seana and I, just a blip of an occurrence in Maggie's day thankfully. It helped that our staircase is split with a landing halfway down and they are carpeted. Well with that event I thought it a good idea to show her how you do stairs.. and she has since gotten it down... not great but pretty good... and she has taken what she has learned with the stairs to getting off our bed!!

So the plan this week is to get some furniture the new apartment is bigger and the lack of furniture is an eye sore!

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Beardsley Zoo

So we have a zoo nearby, in fact it is only a 7 minute drive from the house... can you say Zoo Membership???!!! Turns out an individual membership is only $50.00! Oh yeah!

Its a pretty nice little zoo, they don't have a ton of exotic animals, a lot of animals from North and South America and just a couple from Asia and elsewhere... no elephants, no giraffes... but they do have a couple Amur Tigers and a bear!

I got a little carried away with this Otter photo op.... Maggie is just a really cute otter what can I say??

They need a platform for this thing to get proper measurements... you lose aout 6 inches without the platform... But Maggie is bigger than a house cat... this we already knew.
I attempted to get a more precise measurement... around 30 inches give or take!
They have a carousel! So Maggie got her first ride on a carousel!

I was also riding a carousel pony when video taping this so be warned!!

What a great way to spend a morning!