Thursday, March 26, 2009

Butterflies in Boston

On Friday, March 13th, I experienced the beauty of butterflies in the city of Boston, even though it was a chilly late-winter day. I, however, was feeling the heat and humidity of summer because it was so warm, sunny, and tropical-like where I was. And where was I, you may ask? In a beautiful new butterfly garden at the Museum of Science in Boston, where Peter and I took John that day. (That museum is probably the best I've ever been to! It's a must-visit, with or without kids.)

Butterflies are such lovely little creatures. I enjoyed seeing them flit peacefully around, seemingly in their own little world. It's therapeutic to sit and watch them--I wish I could get some "butterfly therapy" every day! Soon after we walked in, one landed right on the back my head, but it flew away just as Peter took a picture of it, leaving an exciting photo of just my head:

While we were there, two more landed on me and one landed on John but they took off pretty quickly. The butterflies were gorgeous!

The scenery and the view outside of the Charles River and Boston skyline were nice too...

John and I, with the Charles River behind us

Tropical environments are my heaven!

Can you spy the butterflies? (It's easier if you click on the picture to magnify it. Unless of course you have superhero eyesight, which some of you very well might have.)

There was a big full-length mirror near the exit to check yourself over for butterflies before leaving. There we are!

We finally got a picture of a butterfly on one of us just before we left. This huge owl butterfly landed on Peter's butt and wouldn't budge for like two minutes. It was so funny!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Random Tidbits

-My blog friend Kerri makes and sells her own so-good-you-could-almost-eat-them homemade soaps and bath products, and she recently launched her Messes and Mudpies website for selling them. I can personally attest to the high quality of her products: in December I ordered some of her things, and they were all wonderful. They also arrived quickly and in perfect condition. I couldn't have been happier with the Warm Pumpkin Spice soap bar (which cleaned and gently exfoliated my skin and left the nicest light scent on it), the pretty cupcake bath bombs, and the two fun lizard and fish soaps that I got for John. I will definitely be a repeat customer, and I hope you'll check her site out. It's worth it!

-My sister Elizabeth had her first baby last Thursday, March 5th, and it made the news in Boston because she, the baby (Rocco Anthony), and the father (Justin) all were born on the 5th of March, and it's a pretty rare thing for mom, dad, and baby to have the same birthday. Rocco showed up a week early all on his own--what great timing! We've been surprised at just how much attention this has received: their story has been on three different Boston TV channels, aired nationally on the Fox News Channel last Saturday, there were two newspaper interviews, and even The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Oprah, and The Today Show have contacted them! Here are the links to two of the news stories:

"Couple Beats Odds, Hits Birthday Trifecta" (ABC)

"Mom, dad and new baby all share same birthday"

A picture of Justin, Elizabeth, and Rocco from the NBC interview.

-From a pleasant subject to an unpleasant one (sorry!), I've been really ticked off this week at HBO and the continuous crap that it spews out. They've totally crossed the line now with an episode of that horrible show Big Love that they plan to air soon. In it, they show the details of what happens in the Mormon temples. As a Mormon, I'm highly offended by this. What takes place in our temples is private, special, and very sacred, and they're taking that and using it as sensationalized entertainment. So I called HBO headquarters in New York City to leave a message letting them know how I feel and why I feel that way. If they hear from enough people, maybe there will be a chance (albeit small) that they won't air this especially offensive episode. What are these people thinking anyway? It seems that working for HBO has diminished or obliterated any moral compass they ever had.

-Speaking of TV, you've heard of the Nielsen TV ratings, right? They contacted me awhile ago to be part of their monitoring program, and I got the materials in the mail this week. Starting yesterday I have to keep a diary of whatever we watch on TV and then send it back to them after a week. In exchange they already sent me $30 in cash. Cool! I think it's a neat thing to be a part of. I've always been curious as to how exactly they come up with those ratings, and now I get to find out firsthand. (I bet you can guess which channel's shows won't be featured at all in my TV diary! Not that we even get HBO. Why pay for garbage? Sorry, just had to get in another dig. I'm done now!)

-I'm up in Massachusetts visiting my family for the next week and I may not be around in the blogosphere as much until the week after next. Originally for our spring vacation we were going to go on a Caribbean cruise. Then the economy tanked, so we thought about Disneyworld instead, and when the economy still didn't improve, we finally decided on my mother's house 90 minutes north of us in Mass., because it's FREE! : )

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Exciting News!

I'm pregnant! I'm finally pregnant! I've reached the 3-month mark, which is usually a good time to share the news. This is the reason why I've been so exhausted these past few months. And coupled with that, apparently the same hormones that cause fatigue can also cause sleeplessness, which let me tell you, is brutal. But things are getting better and I'm feeling more and more like my normal self. And I can't complain too much about my symptoms because after three years of trying, I'm so thankful to be having a baby. I'll take whatever it doles out and I'll do it without (much) complaint!

Yesterday we got to see the baby by ultrasound. It was amazing. Even though I've been pregnant before, it's just as magical the second time around, perhaps in some ways even more so since we had to wait a long time for this one. The baby, who is now about 2-3 inches long, was so active and bouncy on the screen, but I can't even feel it, yet it's happening right inside my belly! That's fascinating to me! We're very excited and grateful that this has finally happened for us.

One more exciting piece of baby news is that my younger sister Elizabeth went into labor last night and will probably have her baby today! It's her first baby and it will be my first nephew. And here's the one-in-a-million thing that might even get them in the local news: Today, March 5th, is Elizabeth's birthday, Justin's birthday (he's the daddy), and their baby's likely birthday. How cool is that!?

Monday, March 2, 2009

The "Cat" in the Hat

"The sun did not shine. It was too wet to play. So we sat in the house all that cold, cold wet day..."

Today is Dr. Suess Day! I learned last week from my one of Cheryl's blog posts that Dr. Suess Day was going to be today. I did some research (thank you Google--which, by the way, has a cute logo today made from Dr. Suess characters) and found out that Dr. Suess Day is celebrated in schools, libraries, and homes across the country every year on March 2nd, which was his birthday. We're a family of Dr. Suess fans (one of us in particular...can you guess who?) and I thought these pictures from last fall were perfect for today.

What is it about Dr. Suess that has such staying power? I think the clever rhymes, the funny stories, and the unique illustrations and characters are what appeal to children. I know they do for my son John. His favorites are The Grinch Who Stole Christmas (he seems to look up to the unreformed Grinch as a role model--scary, I know) and of course The Cat in the Hat, which we've read so many times that he has nearly the whole thing memorized. He even recites it word-for-word when he's lying in bed at night. I too loved Dr. Suess books when I was young, and now I enjoy reading them with my own child. I think Theodore Geisel, a.k.a. Theo LeSieg, a.k.a. Dr. Suess, was a literary genius who left a treasure trove for generations to come in the form of his wonderful books and stories. And so to you I do say, have a happy Dr. Suess Day! (That's pretty much the extent of my rhyming abilities.)