nalgene water bottles bad????

have i been living under a rock or what? how come i didn't know about this. maybe i'm just being overly-paranoid or maybe this is some big hoax by...i don't know. glass bottles just won't work for me though!

our stolen furniture-health alert on polycarbonate

on the trail of water bottle toxins

hazards of hydration-sierra club nov/dec 2003

first day of school

tis time for tyler to return to school, and back to our school year routine. he has been very candid about not wanting to go back, though i'm sure seeing his friends again will ease the pain of being in school (you've got to give him credit for being honest). much like past years, i'm sure he'll face some challenges in school work and in paying attention again, but he always succeeds in the end. the road may seem long while we're in the process (i think that's why he's not looking forward to going back), but he never fails to finish well. this will be his last year in elementary school, and we are amazed at how fast time goes. in fact, i remember when he was still very small and going into kindergarten. ack! we all walked with him to school and said good-bye to him once he was safely in his classroom. i'm sure he was glad we didn't go and give him hugs and kisses in front of EVERYONE in the whole class, though he probably would have been a good sport about it. well, here's a few photos from this morning (notice the look of excitement he has...is that forced???) and a short video clip to show how anxious he is about his first day of school.


visit to the zoo

this morning we met up with some other mamas at the zoo. although our trip was brief (1.5 hours) it was still a lot of fun. the seasonal TOUCH! ray and shark exhibit was coming to an end soon, so we headed up that way first. they had a number of sting rays in the large pond (though i didn't see any sharks), where you can touch and feed them. it was fun to watch, but i did not touch any. because the zoo is so big, and our little one had to get home for her nap, we only saw the butterfly house and the african savanna portion of the zoo. we need to get a zoo pass so we can go as often as we like and not feel like we have to see everything. by the way, thank you katie for getting us in on behalf of their zoo membership!

tyler waiting to touch a sting-ray

the tylers trying to attract some sting-rays

emma in the butterfly hosue


back to the beach and birthday party

friday we went back to huntington beach for a refreshing swim in lake erie. the temperature that day got up to 92 F so swimming was the perfect solution for keeping us cool.

beach bum

tyler making a sand angel (the sand was REALLY hot, yet he was determined to make the angel)

a lone sailboat on the lake

today we went to jon and jenna's to celebrate ben's 1st birthday party. wohoo! he got his very own "smash" cake, though he wasn't quite into the whole smashing thing.

quite a sizable cake for one little boy!

shoulder pads

i just finished some shoulder pads for emma's car seat straps. i don't care for the shoulder pad options they have out there for kiddies, so i decided to try and make one. what do you think? i actually made some for her infant seat as well, but they weren't as sturdy as these ones so i tossed them. when she was a baby, the shoulder pads worked pretty well-keeping the straps from digging into her neck when she falls asleep in the seat. even though she doesn't really fall asleep in the car anymore, it just adds that little extra comfort (and looks stylish too).




nostalgic moments

i just got teary eyed watching mark morris dance group on live from lincoln center on pbs. no, no, it wasn't because i was moved by the performance, per se (no offense mark morris). as i sat watching them perform, i started reminiscing about the days when i used to do that. all those rehearsals, the mental preparation, and being on stage just made me really miss what i used to do. *sigh* i actually miss all those tedious rehearsals, tech, and dress rehearsals. i miss working so hard to accomplish something and being paid nothing for it, because all that mattered was being able to share the joy i feel when i dance with the audience...in essence, to offer my heart to them. i miss being able to forget myself for an hour or two and transform into someone else on stage. that's what got me all sobby (like my new word?) watching mark morris.

maybe i need to take more dance classes (too bad that costs money)...hey, that's a good gift idea. class cards for a dance class (note my subtlety).

the show was fabulous by the way (especially on our 32" tv). the music and the choreography complemented each other perfectly-i wish i could think up of stuff like that. mark morris makes choreography look so easy. i recommend catching that show if you can. they're apparently coming to cleveland feb. 2008 for a one night show. funny thing, i actually took a class from one of the company members while we were still in seattle...and he was in the show. almost like 6 degrees of kevin bacon...but not really, i guess.



all i wanted was *one* nice picture of the both of them, looking and smiling at the camera at the same time. instead, i get four pictures, with one smiling in one photo and the other smiling in another photo...hopeless, i tell ya. maybe if i photoshop one photo w/ another photo together...no, i think i'll just try to get another shot.


10 things i love about you

it's time to compile our annual top 10 list for our anniversary. sorry, it's not for the public eye...but i can't wait to exchange it with my dear husband's. we've done it every year for our anniversary (inspired by high fidelity). some things on the list are the same and some things change (mostly the silly ones), but now that we have accumulated a few it's fun to compare what we wrote from previous years.

i miss you dearly (i know it's only been 1 day)...and don't forget to do your top ten!


mustangs, camaros, corvettes...oh my!

we checked out the lakewood kar kulture show today to see all the cool old cars (the rest of the photos are on flickr). there was a rather impressive collection, and my most favorite car (it was actually for sale last year...if it's the same one) was there. if i knew anything about fixing up cars, maybe i would consider buying one to fix up...but all i know is how to check the oil and change tires. i don't think those skills are going to get you very far when you're trying to fix up an old car. there was also live music there, which we listened to a little of (couldn't linger long since ms. emma needed to get home for her beauty sleep). emma especially enjoyed the lively beat, since she couldn't stop from bobbing her head and shaking her hips. the girl's got good taste in music.


"and that's a good thing..."

1. some good looking crema (although come to think of it, it doesn't look that great in this picture...but it really did look good, and the smell of the coffee brewing....aaahhh, we love coffee!)

2. tyler went and played with his buddies for 5 hours the other day. they went to 7 eleven to get slurpies, raced their bikes in an empty tennis court, went to the library (i know, can you believe it?), played some video games at a friends house, played at a playground, and finally came back with one friend to play legos for an hour. he was so tired by the end of the night, that he even requested to go to bed early. how great is that? and how great is it that we live in a city small enough that the kids can ride around the neighborhood safely and still be close by, yet be only 15 minutes away from downtown cleveland and have most of the amenities of a big city?

3. while tyler was out playing with his friends and emma napped, i sat and read and enjoyed some daytime quiet time (usually i end up staying up later than planned because that's the only catch up/quiet time i have). it's refreshing to have time like that every once in a while.

4. emma took 10 steps on her own twice yesterday. any day she'll start walking as if that's all she's ever done.

5. i got that dance teaching job. i start sept. 15. very excited and very happy. thank you to everyone who put in a good word for me, i really appreciate it.


is your neighborhood walkable?

www.walkscore.com-helping homebuyers, renters, and real estate agents find houses in great neighborhoods. we scored 80 out of a 100. did you know that george bush's ranch in texas scored a 0 out of 100?

more about the library

it's so great to have the library just at the end of your street. i think our house is just far enough away from the building to avoid the noise and traffic to and from the library, but it's not so far that you can't just do a quick, last minute pop-in. i had some time to myself this morning while finishing up some grocery shopping and took the opportunity to capture some library photos. i had hoped for better photos, but i was short on time and holding 2 bags of groceries in one hand. the construction part of the photo is part of the old library. they kept the width of the library building, but i believe they expanded upwards and backwards. lakewood has 2 library branches, and the one by our house is the main branch. i think it will be even more spectacular once all the construction work is completed. libraries are so awesome, and i'm so glad that tyler loves going there. during school, he usually makes a library trip at least once every 2 weeks. it's definitely a great way to give him something to do, especially during the winter when he gets more stir crazy. and the best part is that i don't need to accompany him all the time. that way he's not completely limited on the time he can go to the library (like when it's 7 p.m. and it's still bright outside and he wants to go do something and i can't leave the house because emma's already sleeping). anyway, it's pretty cool to have a library so close to us.


hello mayor!

the mayor came to our door yesterday? anyone ever had their mayor come to their doorstep? first time for me, and i was taken by surprise. i think he's up for re-election and is making his rounds. unfortunately, still being a newbie in the area, we don't know any other lakewood mayor before him. i guess he can count on us for his support, he seemed very nice indeed. we love lakewood, and we love living in lakewood. the newly renovated library (which is at the end of our street) is awesome, there's great local shops around, and my kids love lakewood park. yes, our property tax is high compared to, let's say, cleveland proper, but our school system, and our police force, and our roads in the winter are way better than, let's say, cleveland proper. so what can i say? no complaints yet (except for our new neighbors...they're loud, annoying and very young, or maybe it's because we're getting old that we think they're loud and annoying?).


hello babies!

Congratulations to Alecia and Charleston on the birth of their baby boy, Cassius Dale, born today at 3:27 p.m. Hooray, hooray!!!

Also another congratulations to Darrin and Terry on the birth of their baby girl, Ava Leannah born on 17 July! Woohoo!

Loving all these cutie babies!


back to the beach

we returned to huntington beach today...this time with aaron. i apologize there are no pictures today because i forgot the camera at home. it was busier today, but not so bad the we couldn't find a spot. i think i could easily be a beach bum if i wanted to. it's just so nice to be out on the sand, by the water, swimming...now if we only had a boat, or maybe a yacht. anyway, emma is getting more comfortable with the "open" (i know lake erie is actually not an open body of water, but it's big enough that it seems like it) water and had more fun with it today. she even decided to walk around on the sand, but with shoes. maybe next time she'll try it barefooted. after swimming we found a park bench/table in the overflow parking lot to eat our KFC. nothing says summer like fried chicken :). tyler had so much fun today (and yesterday) that he wants to go back again...i suppose why not. better get as much beach time as we can before school starts.

some summer sun!

okay, i take back the comment i made about not being able to lounge on the beach...because that's what i did today-sort of. since it was a beautiful day today (unlike yesterday), i took the kids to huntington beach to enjoy some outdoor time and to get us all out of the house. plus, tyler has never been there yet, and i don't think he's swam in lake erie until today. the water was cool, but seemed warm once you get in. there was plenty of sun, and not too many people-it was the perfect day to go. both tyler and emma had fun in the water. emma did a lot better than the last time we were here, too. she wasn't as fearful of getting her feet wet by the water, and didn't seem to mind being half submerged as we played cops and robber with tyler (we are hoping to go back tomorrow, but this time with dad). i would have taken more pictures, but it was rather difficult with just me around holding a babe who does not care to stand on sand.

for more pictures from today at the beach click here.


a weekend mixed with joy and sorrow...

last weekend (maybe it was actually thurs. or fri. of last week) aaron, emma and i took a walk to our most FAVORITE bakery, the bavarian pastry shop, to enjoy some delicious pastries and other baked delights.

i was particularly looking forward to my usual baklava and cheese pretzel pastry, and kept thinking during our walk there (in the sweltering heat, mind you) how great it will taste, especially with my coffee. but to our dismay we found this horrible sign at the door:

we were shocked, and most disappointed. it's a shame, because they had some great stuff in there. our life will never be the same again....

now on to the fun stuff from last weekend. we went back to west side market to pick up some lunch meat. i had forgotten how busy it gets on a saturday, especially when it's nice outside. i don't really like it when the market gets super busy, especially when all i'm trying to do is get stuff done on my grocery list, ugh. regardless, it was fun. i love west side market. everyone is so friendly, and perhaps even more so once you pick your regular vendors.

then we headed outside where they had stuff going on again across the street from the market. we watched a one man band and a capoeira group...that was pretty neat. for more market and capoeira pictures go here.

feeling like new...

my dearest eyang putri (my grandmother) just underwent back/spine surgery. it sounds like she's doing well, and we're praying for a swift recovery. this is a picture of her post-80th birthday party...i'm sure this may be how she feels at the moment now that her surgery is done.


rain, rain go away, come again another day

it was another wet day today. so wet (much like tuesday) that there was massive flooding even on the freeway. it was also very dreary all day, and reminded me of seattle but more muggy. so much for my attempt to kill the weeds on our driveway with vinegar. now i'll have to try again. i think the sun needs to make a permanent appearance before it starts to get cold...plus i'm not dark enough (wink, wink). my summer tan isn't going to last me through the year-how sad. what ever happened to those days of lounging on the beach soaking up rays? oh wait...i don't think i ever had "those days of lounging on the beach." that's okay. i don't want to get sunburned anyway.

i still haven't found an indoor play space (for emma) around here for those long winter days. the only place i can think of at the moment is those play areas at the mall, and man they're always packed with kids every time we're there. i enjoy people, but i don't enjoy fighting for space in a small area. i did, however, hook up with the LECPTA which coordinates playgroups for your kids to attend (now i really sound mommy-ish, don't i?). i think that should keep emma occupied one day/week. but sometimes i just feel like getting out of the house and letting her run around, and that's just hard to do when it's cold outside. maybe we'll try playing in the snow this year...


interview, welcome home, and congratulations all rolled up into one

i have an interview at ymca to teach ballet on saturdays. sounds like that may work out (based on our phone conversation). she was also looking for someone to teach thurs. evenings, but was very understanding and still seemed interested in having me come in for an interview even after i told her that i couldn't do thursdays. praise god and hopefully things will work out :)

on another note, tyler came home yesterday. sounds like he had a good summer at his mom's. emma has been totally hanging on him for the past couple of days already...i think she really missed him. according to aaron, she even sat on his lap for a good while this morning while he finished up his TV show (she rarely, if at all, sits still for us on any occassion!)-pretty amazing if you ask me.

lastly, a big congratulations to jade on her engagement to macky. hooray, hooray...i'm very excited and so happy for you!


trip photos!

trip photos are uploaded on www.flickr.com. one set is taken by me ("indonesia july 2007") and the other are copies sent to me from michelle's camera ("indonesia july 2007 michelle's camera"). click on a set, then on the details link (or the slideshow link) to view the photos in chronological order. enjoy!

stuff going on

west side market-angle 1

west side market-angle 2

huntington beach

at emerald necklace marina

at emerald necklace marina

we've had a lot of stuff going since we've recovered from our trip's jet-lag. the first weekend after we were back we went to west side market to tool around and then to huntington beach to swim. then mon. and tues. emma & i went to kid fest, put on by cross point church. then the following sat. we hosted a BYOM (bring your own meat) cook-out...which was super fun by the way (pics to come later). then this past sun. we found a little marina where you can go fishing or kayaking/canoeing(??). the weather's been so nice that we gotta cram all that outdoor stuff before the cold hits and the snow comes.

new kicks!

hard-soled shoes for the playground
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