Sunday, June 29, 2008

Much Needed Update

A few weeks ago we went on a hike with the youth up to Spencer's Butte. The hike was about 6 miles long with most of it hiking up a mountain. For the first few miles my back and legs were getting really tired because I had Owen in a backpack. Then we started going vertical up to the top of the butte. It was really tough for me since I haven't been working out like I should. Kristin took Owen down the butte and we had to end our hike after mile 5 because we ran out of food for Owen. All in all, a really beautiful hike through the Oregon forest. I'd like to thank Landon and Heather for letting me borrow their backpack even though I was wearing a Ute shirt that day.

Thankfully, Owen slept for a lot of the hike.

Over this past weekend we escaped the heat and went camping out on the coast. The following day we went to Newport, OR for SeaFest. Part of the event included a sea rescue demonstration from the US Coast Guard. Since I love helicopters, I had to watch. We stood at the end of the pier while the helicopter dropped people into the water about 40 yards away and pulled them out again. This was the highlight of my week. For those that don't know, I love helicopters almost as much as I love cooking. I almost drove my carpool into the emergency lane watching a Chinook helicopter fly around Eugene the other day.

Kristin will probably be mad when she sees how many pictures I posted of this event. Since Dan missed the event, I wanted them to experience it like I did. To get the full effect try beating on your chest really fast to mimick the sound of the helicopter and talk really loud when you look at the post...then you'll feel you were there.

Here are some pictures of Owen playing in the sand. This was one of two experiences on this trip he managed to get a fist full of dirt in his mouth.

What is more majestic than a man and his dog. (Especially this man!)

And finally, do you ever wonder where all the bits of fish go after the filets have been packaged and frozen? That question has plagued me for years and now I have the answer. It goes into a dump truck. This is a huge pile of fish bits left over from a seafood processing plant. It really stinks because it was hot outside. Now I am plagued with a new question: Where does the truck go?

Saturday, June 14, 2008

7 Months of Fun

Owen is 7 months old this month, time is really starting to go fast. It seems like as soon as he hit 4 months, time has flown by. He rolls all over the place and sits by himself. He hasn't started crawling complaining here. It'll happen soon enough. He started teething a couple weeks ago, and he has 2 little pearly-whites coming up right now. The dog is his favorite toy, his favorite book is What Color is Your Underwear?, and his favorite game to play is the "I'm gonna get you" game. And he absolutely loves bath time. If he even hears the water running he starts kicking his legs and squealing in delight. Here are some pictures of tonight's bath.
Playing around with the camera
He's also been a part of a developmental study at the University of Oregon since he was 3 months old and he is almost done, 2 more months. They are testing 9 normally developing babies (Owen is in this group of course) and then 9 or so kids with Cerebral Palsy to determine when and how babies learn to sit up by themselves. Basically, he gets all wired up with electrodes and then is strapped onto this bench where they test his sitting muscles by slowly taking away the supports and making his sit on his own. I know, it sounds horrible, but it's not that bad, it's perfectly safe, he's not getting any radiation or scary stuff like that.He actually likes it, because once they get him all strapped in, he gets to watch Baby Einstein...which he loves.
Anyway, we go every other week, and he gets paid a good amount for the time we spend there, so we've enjoyed putting our son to work. He buys his own toys with the money he earns, and occasionally he'll buy Mom and Dad a toy. Last month he bought us Mario Kart for Wii. Such a nice son.

This is Owen at 4 months old

This is Owen at 7 months old

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Coupon Crazy

The past couple of nights I have been staying up late reading blogs like Money Saving Mom and Freebies 4 Mom, trying to figure out how to use coupons to get free or nearly free items at the grocery store. I have never been the kind to use coupons because I thought that even with coupons for the expensive brands, the generic or store brands were still cheaper. That might be true for some things, but wait until you see what I "bought" with coupons yesterday. I got to "buy" stuff that I normally wouldn't buy because it would be too expensive or we just didn't need it that badly.
Everything in this picture was free...actually they paid me $0.25 to take it.
Here's how:
Live Active Cereal $2.84 used $3 coupon here
Purina Puppy Chow $4.12 used $4 coupon here
Kotex 16 ct. $1.00 used $1 coupon here or in All You magazine
John Freida FrizzEase Mousse $0.97 used $1 coupon in All You magazine
Vlasic Dill Relish $1.oo used $1 coupon here
Buddies Soap $0.94 each used 2 $1 coupons here or $2 coupon here (read the fine print)
Glade Air Freshner $0.94 used $1 coupon in All You Magazine
Adidas Deodorant $3.74 used free coupon from All You Magazine
(All links are courtesy of Money Saving Mom, thanks.)
That left me with $.25 cents overage, but I needed to buy a tomato, a head of lettuce and some taco seasoning, so the total I paid for everything was $2.51. I hope you guys are as excited as I am about this. How cool is that? You should all go to Wal-mart and try this today. Oh, by the way, the All You magazine that I mentioned is sold at Wal-mart for $1.97 and it pays for itself every time. I used the May issue for my shopping trip, so you might not be able to get everything I got, but the June issue probably has some other great coupons. By the way, some coupons will let you print them twice if you push the backspace button after the first one has printed.
I am so excited about "buying" stuff with coupons, it makes a run to Wal-mart actually fun instead of frustrating. Let me know how it works out for you and if you have any problems getting the coupons. Good luck.