Tuesday, January 29, 2008

More Drama

So I got a call yesterday afternoon from the Post Office that our dog had bit our mail carrier. I was in total shock. I NEVER thought any of our dogs would bite someone. Sure they bark a lot when people drive by our house or approach our gate. Some of them even may occassionally growl. But none of them have EVER bitten anyone. And we have had strangers come on our property without any problems many times.

I still don't have the details yet. All I know is the postal carrier was placing a package on the gate post like they often do. I remember them asking a long time ago where we would prefer packages to be left and we always tell people by the gate. It is out of the way and not highly visible except to our immediate neighbors (3 other houses) who share the gravel road. By this we meant leave it near the gate, not necessarily "on" the gate or "inside" the gate, although that was fine by us too. Basically, we were cool with wherever they wanted to leave it in the general vicinity of the gate. NEVER were we informed that there were any problems. NEVER did they ask if there was an alternative location to leave stuff. Until yesterday when we were informed one of our dogs bit her on the hand when she reached OVER the fence to place the package on top of the rock basket which braces the gate.

All I know so far is the other postal carrier said the dogs often growl at her. This is the first I have heard about the growling. So my question is this; if a dog is growling at you, WHY would you reach over a fence? Doesn't common sense dictate to leave the dog alone and not put yourself in a position that it might bite you? Obviously the dog is giving you warnings if it is growling. I feel TERRIBLE that my dog bit her but at the same time I am angry that she allowed it to happen. Was I somehow negligent here? Am I at fault for this? I thought they trained postal carriers about how to deal with dogs. It's not as though the dog was loose. Apparently they have observed this behavior (growling) before but never brought it to our attention. It seems that most of the negligence has been on their part. Of course now we will have to be extra careful. We are considering building a large fenced enclosure for him internal to our property away from the fence lines but in the mean time, should we be posting signs?

Anyway, to further complicate things, this particular dog (and three of our 4 others to my dismay) are out of date on their rabies vaccines and not up to date (because we haven't gotten the rabies updated) on their licenses. I have no excuse for that other than the usual busy schedule, hard to get into town on the weekend when I am not working, multiple animals=multiple trips etc. which are not very good excuses. Getting at least some of them in this weekend if I can find a place that does just the vaccine (Vets charge you an office visit on top of the vaccine $$$$).

So what do you think? What could/should I have done differently? What should I do now? Help please!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Winter Blues

Can't believe it's been almost a week without posting. Just got the blahs this week. Had a nice visit with my Sister, Brother-in-law, 3 year old niece and 7 month old nephew this weekend. Too cold to do much though. Sis and I scrapbooked a bit which was good cause it's probably been almost a year since I broke out my SB stuff and I am WAY behind. Got 4 (2 page) layouts done.

It has been below zero the last couple of mornings and barely above freezing here at midday. Then there is this and this that have me a bit depressed too (don't click if you don't want to read depressing stuff about people dying.)

So yeah, I am ready for a vacation in sunny Florida at the Happiest Place on Earth.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Car Seats

So this post from Daddyology reminded me that I needed to start looking for a new car seat or booster seat for Jaxon, now that he is almost 4, almost 40 lbs and 40" tall. So I began my on-line research and found this and this(grab a tissue but do at least try to watch.)

I also found this on rear facing seats which made me think that next time around we will probably do rear facing for quite a bit longer.

Apparently, the latest recommendations are that you keep your child in a 5-point harness type car seat as long as possible. Although at least one of our car seats (Cosco Alpha Omega) is designed for kids up to 80 lbs., once they hit 40 lbs. it is supposed to be used with a seat belt rather than the 5-point harness. Jaxon is almost to tall now for the harness at its highest point to fit but I tell you, I am just not ready to use just the seat belt on the car seat. So I started looking for other options. Let me tell you, there aren't many models out there to choose from and most are $200 or more. I did find the Cosco/Safety 1st Apex 65 for $79 with $5 shipping so I think that is what we are going to get.

To save some of you some research, here is a review on the seat.

Turning a Corner?

Well, the last couple of days Jaxon has been just as sweet as can be. I have hardly heard a single whine out of him and it has been sooooo nice! I have tried to compliment him without making too big a deal about it (see previous post on compliments). I hope this is a sign of things to come. 3 has been no picnic so I am hoping 4 will be a bit more enjoyable age.

Also, it is exciting to see him finally taking an interest in letters. Around Christmas he was starting to find his name on his own, recognizing letters "J-A-X-O-N that spells Jaxon!" It was cute because he located all the presents with his name on them from under the tree. The problem was trying to explain that some said "to Jaxon" and others were to someone else "from Jaxon". To him, they all had his name on them!

When we drive around town now his new game is to point out all the J's, A's, X's, O's and N's he sees. Very cute. "Look! O for Jaxon!" We have also been working on learning some other letters lately too and he is just starting to pick out a few others as well. It is so fun to see him excited about learning new things.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Chip off the Old Block

I forgot how when I was a kid I could NOT take a compliment. Hated them. Really. They made me squirm.

I almost laughed the first time I heard Jaxon respond with a "stop it" and a pouty frown and crossed arms to someone saying "thank you" to him recently. It's his new response to anyone being nice to him lately, whether it's "good job" "thank you" whatever. And where did he get this unusual response? All I can say is it must be genetic. I outgrew it long before he was born but I remember reacting the exact same way when I was little.

Sometimes it is like looking back in time at myself. Sometimes I think I must be the only person who truly understands what he is thinking or feeling, especially at times like these where his reaction is so unusual. When I tell people, I used to be the same way they look at me like I'm nuts. It is so wild though to see that some of this stuff, particularly personality traits, likes and dislikes, reactions that I thought were uniquely my own, are actually genetic! Not learned behaviours, as they were long forgotten by me, much less practiced. It's really pretty bizarre.

Friday, January 11, 2008

More on Disney Plans

So we decided to stay at the Pop Culture value resort. Great convenience and perks staying on property at a Disney resort hotel. You get the dining plan which gives you one counter service meal and one table service meal each day as well as a snack for about $85 a day for the 3 of us. The table service meal alone would cost close to that much so it is a really good deal. The only problem is many of the restaurants get booked up so you have to kind of plan out your trip in advance to figure out where you will be on what days to pick where you want to eat. The other perk of staying at the resorts is that each day different parks have either early or late hours just for those staying at the resorts. So that helped determine which park to go to on which day.

So here are the restaurants we decided on:

For our days at Epcot we will be eating at The Coral Reef and Marrakesh.

For the Magic Kingdom we decided on The Liberty Tree Character Dining and Ohana at The Polynesian (just a quick monorail ride from the Magic Kingdom).

For Animal Kingdom we will be eating at Boma at the Animal Kingdom Lodge.

For Hollywood Studios (formerly MGM) we will take the boat over to The Beach Club for the seafood buffet at Cape May.

Other perks of staying at a Disney resort hotel:

Free airport shuttle and they take care of picking up your luggage and deliver it to your room so you can head straight to the parks rather than waiting until check in at 3:00.

You get a free photopass picture

You get $15 certificate for Planet Hollywood (no biggie but hey, its a free meal)

So yeah, we are getting really excited!

We're Going to Disney World!

So it's official. The airfair and vacation package are booked and deposits paid. Dinner reservations (yes you actually need them for the table dining restaurants) are made for each night. We will be there Feb 27 to March 5. Wooo-hooo! I'll post more later since my little guy just woke from his nap and wants some Mommy time.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Vacation Planning

Well, got the bug to start planning another Disney vacation, this time for just the three of us. It was great to have Grandma and Bapa along on Jaxon's very first Disneyland visit last May, but this time we want to do just the three of us. We very seldom do stuff just the three of us. We are fortunate to live close to John's parents and my parents come to visit frequently so when we do fun stuff we often have at least one set of Grandparents along. Which is great - but sometimes it is nice to spend quality fun time just the three of us.

So, what we are debating now is whether to go back to Disneyland for 5 days (Using our airline miles this would cost $990-$1096 for either the Howard Johnson or Candy Cane Inn) or do Disneyworld this time and stay at one of the value resorts and do 6 or 7 nights. This would cost $1500-1635. Plus food for either of course. We usually estimate around $100 a day for food for the three of us.

Keeping in mind that Jaxon will just be turning 4 in March, do you think Disneyworld is too big for him? I remember things being so spread out there. The themeparks there are so much bigger (at least it seemed that way) than the California parks. We haven't been to Disneyworld since our honeymoon in 1999. Also, we have never stayed at one of the value resorts. Are they as awful as they look? Why can't they have a nicely themed value resort? Why do they have to have the giant crap all over the value resort hotels?

And if we do stay at a value resort, any recommendations on which of the 4 is best/worst? Of the 4, the All-star music looks the least evil, with maybe all-star movie coming in second. Any thoughts? Ease of transport from the hotel is a BIG factor too.

I'm excited! Share your thoughts and advice freely! (Gunfighter - I am looking at you specifically since I KNOW you go every year!)

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

A New Year

So I find myself in a contemplative mood today. Reflecting on another year completed and an open blank slate ahead, waiting to be filled with new memories. Wondering what is in store for us as our baby turns four the beginning of March, no longer a baby, or even a toddler, but becoming a full fledged "little kid." Wow. Hoping to start the process all over again soon.

Thought I'd share some of my favorite pics from last year. And yeah, since the highlight of 2007 was taking Jaxon to Disneyland for the first time, the majority are Disney pics.


Giving loves to Mickey

Jaxon & Bapa on the much loved Dumbo

One of the few pics in which Jaxon is wearing his ears

Bapa (my Dad)- the biggest Mouseketeer of them all

Meeting Captain Jack

My fav - giving Woody a high five

Heimlich's chew chew train

One of his favorites at California Adventure

With his beloved Buzz Lightyear Astro Blaster

At the Sisters Rodeo

Going for a ride out camping

Jaxon and cousin Maddy

Jaxon with cousin Maddy at the Pumpkin Patch

Jaxon and Mommy at the pumpkin patch

Jaxon (a.k.a. Captain Jax) showing his "ticket to ride"