Thursday, December 15, 2005

Icy Thursday

We'll it's an icy Thursday morning which began at 5:30am when Everett woke us up. Luckily he went back to sleep until 6:30am. What stinks is that Allen and I weren't able to sleep once he woke us up. I'm pretty sure he woke up because of his cold. His little nose is still stuffy. He also had his 4 month immunization shots yesterday so that could be messing up his sleep patterns a little bit too. At his check up yesterday he weighed 14 pounds 14 ounces and was 26 inches long. That put him in the in the 50% for weight and the 90% for height. I guess he'll be tall and skinny like his father! His height may be a little off though because he kept scrunching up the paper that they marked his measurements on. Allen and I think he's more like 25 inches long, but that still is pretty tall. He's so brave when he gets his shots and hardly even cries. The nurse were we go does such a good job and is so fast, which really helps. He seems to be a very healthy boy so far!

Our trees outside are all covered with ice and it looks really cool. I'm glad I'm inside. :) I've had to miss out on some things this week since we're sick. I was supposed to go to a brunch at my playgroup yesterday but I didn't want to infect anyone, so we stayed home. I made the casserole I was going to make for the brunch for dinner instead. It's really yummy. I got the recipe from my friend from church, Emily.

Farmer's Casserole
6 cups frozen hash brown potatoes (that's a little less than one large 32oz. bag from the frozen aisle)
1½ cups shredded monterey jack cheese with jalapeno peppers or sharp cheddar (I used both kinds and more like 2 cups +)
2 cups diced cooked ham or canadian style bacon
½ cup chopped green onions
8 beaten eggs
2 12oz. cans evaporated milk
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper

1. Grease a 3-quart rectangular baking dish. Arrange potatoes evenly in the bottom of the dish. Sprinkle with cheese, ham and green onion. In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture over potato mixture in dish.

2. Bake uncovered at 350º for 45 to 55 minutes or until center appears set.

I needed to cook mine longer than 55 minutes to get it to cook all the way. Also, I think next time I make it I'm going to add a little more ham and green onion and mix some of it it in with the potatoes more. I might make it again when my family comes next week.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Playgroup on 12/6/05

Here's a photo of Everett with his friends: Kate Jane and Anne Marie. They are all about a month apart. Everett is the oldest. Their moms are all friends from church and we get together about twice a month. It's a lot of fun to share stories and encourage each other.

First Cold

i'm pretty sure everett has come down with his first cold. poor thing. it's so sad to hear him sniffling. there's not a whole lot we can do to help him. we just try to keep his nose clear with saline drops and the bulb syringe. it doesn't seem to affect him too much though. he is still sleeping fine and his temperment hasn't seemed to change much, which is good.

i've got a cold too, and i'm feeling pretty worn out. we finished all our christmas shopping this weekend though. i'm so glad. i'm trying to get all our gifts wrapped today but i'm only about halfway there. my mom arrives on friday and my sister and her family on sunday. here's a link to my sister's family's flikcr page: i can't wait to see them again. they just moved to california because my brother-in-law, brian, is now the associate pastor at grace presbyterian church in silicon valley. we haven't seen them since everett was born. my brother and his wife and kids, who live in newnan, ga, will visit too while everyone is here. then we'll go to augusta to see allen's family on dec. 24.

i can't wait until next week!

Monday, December 05, 2005

Rolling Over

Everett rolled over for the first time this morning (Monday, Dec. 5). I could tell it was coming. He has been putting his left arm under his chest (he sleeps on his tummy) in the crib and kind of propping himself up the past week or so. So this morning around 6:30am I heard him crying and since he doesn't usually wake up until around 8 or 8:30am, I went in to check on him. He was completely on his back with his arms and legs in the air. It suprised me. I turned him over and it's 8:40am now and he's still sleeping. I'm assuming this will become a common occurance now until he learns to get from his back to his tummy.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Latest books I've read (Allen)

I've been on a string of books lately that all seem to be loosely connected. I'm not sure what you would call the class of books, maybe NNF (Nerd Non-fiction). I think it started with a book review I read in Wired magazine earlier this year. The book was blink by Malcom Gladwell, which is largely about how our minds work in split decisions, first impressions, and what he calls "thin slices" of time. He digs into things like blind taste tests (coke vs. pepsi), how we are marketed too, how we make better decisions with fewer choices, etc. I enjoyed it a lot, I like books that give ideas about how the world works, and Gladwell keeps it interesting.

I liked Malcolm Gladwells style enough that I just finished reading another of his books, The Tipping Point, which goes into how fads are started, how little things can push a scenario over the edge, etc. I'm not doing justice to either of these books, Malcolm Gladwell has a way of taking research from so many different fields, combining them and coming up with some very interesting real world applications.

Another book that I just stumbled onto at the library, was Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order, by Steven Strogatz. This one definitely leans more in the direction of Nerd, you need to at least appreciate math to read this one, or you might glaze over and flip to the end. It starts with a look at how some fireflies will spontaneously begin flashing in mass at exactly the same time, then finds parallels in how our Circadian rhythms and sleep cycles work, even the whole 6-degrees of Kevin Bacon thing. When I picked up the book, I was also interested to see if the author ever made the small jump from "spontaneous order" to "a Master Designer", and while I highly doubt he is a Christian, he did devote about 2 sentences to the possibility of there being a Creator involved.

Last, but not least, is Freakonomics, which is in the same vein as Tipping Point and blink. Written by Steven Levitt, it presents some interesting, unorthodox conclusions, when the author digs into the actual statistics that the media tends to skew. For instance, many people wouldn't want their kid to go to friends house if the know that the parents have a gun in the house, but they wouldn't think twice about letting their kid go to someone's house who has a pool in the backyard. Levitt points out that the chances of a child being shot accidentally are an order of magnitude smaller than the chances of a child drowning in swimming pool.

Madeline Mae Mohlenhoff

Sam and Trevor Mohlenhoff, friends of ours from Intown (Sam is one of Jean's former roomates and one of her bridesmaids) just had their first child, baby girl Madeline, on Saturday. She was born the day after her due date (Sam had the Eggplant parmesian at Scalini's, an Italian restaurant in Smyrna, Ga that is legendary for kicking off labor). Madeline was delivered Saturday night at around 8:30pm, she was 7.5 lbs, 19.5 inches. Jean and I went to see her today, and she is a beautiful little girl. We know Trevor and Sam are going to make great parents, we hope Madeline brings them as much joy as Everett has to us.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

First Foods

We fed Everett rice cereal for the first time this morning. He really did a good job with it. I was surprised. He seemed to enjoy it and would cry in between spoonfuls like he wanted more. We're going to continue trying the cereal once a day for a week or so and see how it goes. Then we'll try him on fruits. I think he's going to be a good eater. There are also some other new photos on our flickr site, so be sure to check them out!

Allen fed him because I was getting ready for our neighborhood Christmas women's brunch (yes, another brunch). Click here and you will eventually see some photos from the brunch. In the mean time you can check out photos from our neighborhood Halloween party. For the brunch I made a coffee cake, one my mom has always made since we were little. It's from the Jiffy Baking Mix box. Here's the recipe:

Coffee Cake
2 c. baking mix
3 tbls. sugar
3/4 c. milk
1 egg, slighlty beaten
2 tbls. melted shortening
1 c. chopped walnuts
1/2 c. sugar
2 tbls. baking mix
4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 c. butter
spread 1/2 the cake mixture into a lightly greased 8" pan. cover with 1/2 the topping. spread the remaining cake mixture and remaing topping over that. bake at 350º for 25-30 min or until toothpick comes out clean. yummy!

Friday, December 02, 2005

December Already?

okay. allen really wants me to start contributing to this blog. so, here i am, like with a newborn baby i have time for these things. :) i can't believe december is here already and that everett is almost 4 months old. i still need to do almost all of my christmas shopping. i'm having a hard time coming up with things to get people. we have put up all of our christmas decorations, which is nice. maybe we can get some photos up of our home soon. i feel like all i've been doing lately is cooking. yesterday i made frozen fruit salad for a brunch i went to. here's the recipe:

frozen fruit salad
1 8oz. package cream cheese (softened)
1 cup sugar
1 small can crushed pineapple
1 package frozen halved strawberries in juice (thawed)
2 sliced bananas
1 container cool whip
beat the cream cheese and sugar together until creamy. gently mix in other ingredients. you can then pour into a 9 by 13 pan or a loaf pan (serve in slices) or into muffin liners and freeze until hardened.
it's really yummy!
i guess that's all for now. today i have an exciting day of laundry, grocery shopping, and cleaning planned! at least it's friday. :)

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Baptism Day

Here's Everett dressed up for his baptism, on Sunday, November 13, 2005, at Intown Community Church.

He was baptized by the Rev. Charles Hooper, Jr. Wayne and Deborah Joiner, Lindsay Joiner, Maggie Branson, and Trevor and Samantha Mohlenhoff were there to see the baptism and joined us for brunch afterwards.

It was a beautiful day!

Here we go

Ok, so I'm a little behind the curve on the blogging thing, but I'm going to start one anyway. Quick snapshot of our family:

Me, Allen Joiner, Originally from Augusta, Ga, now living in Peachtree Corners, GA, an North East Atlanta Suburb. I went to Georgia Tech and graduated in 1999 with a BS in Computer Engineering, and have been working at Radiant Systems in Alpharetta ever since.

My beautiful wife, Jean, from Columbus, Ga, went to Berry College in Rome, GA, and used to work at Intown Community Church, where we are actively involved members, but is now at home taking care of our son . . .

. . . Everett, our 4 month old baby boy, who is becoming more and more the joy of our lives (especially since finding his thumb which helped him to start sleeping for 12 hours a night).