Monday, October 31, 2011

Summer Fun!

We knew bath time for Hudson was a favorite, happy, fun time.  Now we are able to move that water fun outside utilizing the sand/water table.  We're holding off on using sand for at least another year, but for now it is hard to imagine him having any more fun than he does splashing the water.

At Grandma and Grandpa's house we also have a little pool to play in.  We tried it out one really warm afternoon recently.  He knew exactly what to do with it.  Lots of fun times are ahead for us this summer.

Zoo Walks and Rides

Last year we purchased a membership to the KC Zoo and took Hudson there whenever we had nice weather.  He was fairly young on those early visits, so we would take along supplies and picnic lunches.  Mostly, he loved watching the kids at the zoo.  We would often lunch near the entrance to Africa because lots of kids in strollers and mom's or daycare providers would chose this location.  Hudson loved it.  He was so entertained watching all of the kid action.

This season, Emily and Rollie bought us a "Gold" Membership, so we now go to the zoo in style.  This particular membership allows for unlimited tram, train, and carousel rides.  Needless to say, this is a really great way to travel around the zoo.  On the first train ride, we loaded the stroller onto the back of the train and sat near the back.  Hudson was making so much happy noise and sound effects, the rest of the riders kept turning around to see who was making loud enough to mask the train whistle and clickety clack of the train.

During the past year, the zoo opened the new polar bear exhibit which is where we begin and end each zoo visit.  Hudson enjoyed many bottles in the observation room as Nakita swam laps around the pool.

We enjoyed visiting the new animals this summer.  There are two baby giraffes, a baby rhinoseros, and two new female gorillas.  Besides new animals, the addition of a sky tram over Africa opened.  We managed to get there at least one day per week, and most weeks it was at least twice.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Best Family Dog EVER

Finally, the moment Molly, the family pug, has been waiting for:  Hudson can play.  The two of them are so cute and sweet.  Molly will get a favorite toy (stacking cup, stuffed penguin, or stacking ring) and take it to Hudson.  Once he notices it, Molly will run over to the dining room table area (about 8 feet away). This is just far enough that Hudson has to work at getting there by going across about 4 feet of hardwood, slippery floor.  Once he gets very close, Molly will just let him touch either the toy or her feet which makes Hudson giggle hilariously (me too) and Molly runs around the table, but comes close enough so Hudson can get to her and not get frustrated.   They play like this until Hudson can barely go any more.  Check out these videos of what I am talking about.  You can hear me laughing louder than Hudson.  So much fun!!!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Tiny Minds

Having been in the education profession for most of my adult life, I take pride in my technology knowledge and skills.  I tried to keep up with the "kids" in my classroom and my own children.  Emily and I have done face time on our iPhones, we even did a three party video chat with our daughter Maureen a few years ago when she was in Germany studying.  Emily can "see" Hudson anytime she wants to during the day using video chat.

Now that Maureen is in Berlin completing research for her PhD, we manage to "see" her most days for a chat.  Since we provide daycare for our 10 month old grandson, Hudson, he gets to see his Aunt Maureen most days.  She can watch him crawl and pull himself up on the furniture.  He gets so excited when her face pops up on the computer screen.  He even reaches for her to pick him up.  Amazing.  I can't help wondering what Hudson's world will be like when he can see his Aunt in Berlin on a daily basis.  Maureen even turned her computer around so we could see the view of the famous TV tower and church out her balcony.  It boggles the mind that I can see out Maureen's apt. window in Berlin while sitting on my couch in Prairie Village, KS.

Below is a screen capture that Maureen did while Hudson, Joe and I were visiting with her last week.

We received an iPad from the kids for Christmas.  Hudson goes crazy over it.  It is just his size.  He really wants to take control over it.  His world will be unimaginable.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Retirement Projects

Of course, my most special retirement project since last summer has been caring for our grandson, Hudson Gallagher Fors.  We joined the Kansas City Zoo and during the summer and fall we managed to visit the zoo at least once a week.  Although Hudson seemed more interested in watching the children, Joe and I enjoyed the walks.  The zoo is really a great walking zoo. Hudson always dresses for the excursions.
We will look after Hudson almost daily until he ready to transition to daycare and then preschool.  Since we live so close to these schools we will be able to do the drop off, pick up, and after school care.  Should be fun.  He is such a joy.

However, when we weren't watching Hudson, I enjoyed making things.  I made wine cork wreaths last winter.

Our daughter, Emily, loves to entertain, and is the hostess for many couples' baby showers.  I made a couple of diaper cakes, and my latest experiment was making a diaper trike.  These are really easy and fun to make.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Chimpanzee Escapes in Kansas City

Yesterday, I was whisked back in time by a news report about a chimpanzee that escaped from its owner and was chased, or rather it chased people, police, kicked in a police cruiser window and generally went crazy. Why was I taken back in time?  When I was young and living in Grand Island, NE only a few houses from my Grandmother's house, there has been severe winds one summer night.  In those times, everyone listened to the radio.  The next morning, a broadcast came on warning people to stay away from Ryder Park, a local ballpark near our house.  During the winds the night before, the Drive In Theatre had been hit hard.  So hard in fact, that the small zoo had blown over releasing several monkeys into the neighborhood.  The monkeys had been spotted near the ball park.

Of course my mother immediately jumped into her car, picked up her mother and headed two blocks to Ryder Park.  They had just pulled up along the street on the north side of the park and rolled down their windows when a flash jumped into the car.  Sitting in the backseat was one of the wild monkeys.  I'm not sure who was more scared Grandma, Mom, or the monkey.  The police were nearby and rescued the monkey.  Our family was showered with movie passes by Wally Kemp, the theatre owner for catching one of the monkeys.

I'm really glad I didn't hear about the escaped chimpanzee yesterday because I would have been compelled to go to the scene in memory of my Mom.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Hudson is the happiest baby ever . . .

Our grandson, Hudson Gallagher Fors, came into our lives on April 29, 2010.  Making his debut at St. Luke's Hospital in Kansas City, MO changed not only his parents' lives, but ours as well.

We had so much fun while his Mommy, Emily, was on maternity leave.  We went for strolls, shopped at the mall on really hot afternoons, and Joe and I "helped out" by watching Hudson so his Mom could train for a triathlon.  Hudson and his parents loved spending time at their country club pool all summer long. Aunt Maureen even got to fly back from Amherst, MA for a couple of weeks in the beginning and again in August for a week before her school year started.  Maureen made him a hat with ears to wear for his newborn photo session.

After his Mommy returned to work, Joe and I started caring for Hudson.  It is so much fun to watch him grow and change each day.  We go for strolls back and forth between their house and ours here in Prairie Village, KS.  It is a 2.5 mile round trip which is just perfect.  We also got a zoo membership, so now we can go to the zoo.  It is fun to pack a picnic lunch and spend time at the Kansas City Zoo.  There is a new polar bear exhibit which is our first and last stop when we go to the zoo.
Ready to go to the zoo.

Watching the polar bear wait for his fish.
We have lots of fun during the day.  Hudson loves to play, sing, read books, and kick and move.
Strolling to our house

Hudson is so happy, he keeps us all laughing.