Thursday, September 30, 2010

A much needed haircut!!!

In anticipation of school starting on Wednessday, September 8th...Emerson and I headed to Peek-A-Do the day before for a much needed haircut.  I promise you, I won't blog about every haircut Emerson ever gets but, since this was only her second haircut EVER (see firt haircut here) and I had my camera with me, I thought I would get a few pictures.  She did a great job, sat very still and was a great model for me afterwards.  She looks so grown up with shorter hair, brings tears to my eyes...SNIFF, SNIFF!!!



Checking it out!!!

Look at all that hair!!!

Getting BOW-tiful!!!

After (sorry there was no "Before" shot)

Check out my sparkles!!!

I love this series of shots...sparkles and all!!!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Bowl of Cereal

It's hard to believe, but Emerson has never had a bowl of cereal.  NEVER!  Sure, she's had cereal when she was a baby and it was watered down with milk, and she's had dry cereal for snacks and sometimes for breakfast.  But an actual bowl of cereal, with a spoon and milk had never been attempted in our house.  I think it probably has something to do with the mess I assumed would be left for me to clean up afterwards.  I've seen those pictures of kids with cereal in their hair, on the floor, even with the milk spilled everywhere.  Yeah, I am pretty sure that is the sole reason my child has never had a bowl of cereal.  But this morning when I asked Emerson what she would like for breakfast, and she replied, "Cereal!", I retorted, "With a spoon and milk?"  She looked confused and then said, "Yes!!"  Maybe it was the extra hour we have to kill on preschool mornings that gave me the wild hair I got, or maybe it was because I thought three was the magical age that she could now "handle her cereal", but I gave in (it was my suggestion after all) and gave Emerson her VERY.FIRST.BOWL.OF.CEREAL. She loved it!!  She thought it was so cool that the milk was on the cereal.  And much to my chagrin, there was hardly a mess to clean up.  So, score one for cereal as a new addition to our breakfast repertoire, especially on preschool mornings!!  Emerson, I am sorry I have deprived you of this for so long!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Preschool Orientation and Cook-Out

Danny and I have been pretty happy with our daycare.  We've never really had a complaint.  It isn't fancy, by any means.  No cameras that I can log onto during the middle of the day to see her, no chefs (yes, some schools have chefs), and no fancy playground equipment.  It was just fine for us; as long as Emerson was happy, we were happy.  But this past year, while Emerson was in the two-year-old class,  there was a lot of turnover among teachers.  Her two-year-old teacher left and the girl who was teaching the three-year-old class left.  So, not knowing what the future held for the three's class, Danny and I made the executive decision to sign Emerson up for preschool.  We figure it was just a deposit and if we were happy with the outcome of the three's, we could always just lose it.  But, after taking a tour, we were sold.  It also helped that one of Emerson's friends was going to be attending as well and helped get Emerson into school there.  So we paid our deposit and anxiously waited for the school year to start in September.  

After two play dates at the school, one of which we missed, it was time for preschool orientation.  On September 1st, we headed to preschool for a morning of orienting.  Luckily, our friend Haegan had the same appointment time we did (the teacher only brought 4 kids in at a time, so it wasn't too overwhelming!).

Haegan and Emerson ready for Orientation!!

Some sights from the classroom!!
Emerson's cubby, a reminder note to wash your hands (you must do this everyday before entering the classroom), and even a frog growth chart (I am sure no one will be surprised to know that Emerson is the shortest one in the class).  Oh, and if you haven't figured it out by looking at the pictures, Emerson's class is the Frog Class!!

Mrs. Tara explaining the rules and procedures for drop-off in the mornings. 

The Question of the Day
One of the first things Emerson will do every morning is find her name and answer the question of the day.  This exercise helps with decision making and recognizing their name.  It also helps the teacher take role.

Name Tags!!
All the children where their name tags on their backs, this way the parent helpers in each room can identify them.


Emerson and Mrs. Tara get a little one-on-one time while the other gals wash their hands. 


Coloring Activity
Mrs. Tara had a great coloring activity set-up for the girls to complete upon arrival.  They all stamped their individual frog with a paint stamper.  This frog will eventually become laminated onto a big piece of construction paper and be the child's personal placemat for snack time.  


Carpet Time
Mrs. Tara was great about giving the girls a small taste of what they would be doing on a daily basis in class.  Carpet time is an integral part of their day.  They read stories, tell stories, sing songs, pray, communicate, dance, and share on the carpet.  Mrs. Tara explained how the children should sit when they are in the circle, she read them a book about starting a new school, she introduced them to Mr. Froggy (a frequent friend of the class) and they all got up and sang and danced to a new song.  

Emerson listening intently during carpet time!!


Learning about the different centers in their classroom!!
After carpet time, the girls all got up and got in a line, then they hopped around the room (literally!) with Mrs. Tara and Mr. Froggy, so Mrs. Tara could explain all the different centers in the room.  There is a toy center, a reading center, a science center, a painting center, and they even have an additional room called "The Pond".  They share this room with the Fish Class (hence the pond reference).  



Making a special crown for a special day!
After a quick tour around the room, everyone got a turn to make a special crown that will adorn the wall of the classroom.  This crown will stay up all year until it is the child's birthday and then it will be brought down.  During the week of the child's birthday, they are the "Special Student of the Week".  This honor comes with lots of perks and the week is pretty much all about the child; special books to be brought in, a special toy of the child's, and even a celebration where the crown will be worn.  

One last picture of Emerson and Haegan playing!! 

It was a great orientation and I think Emerson was more-than-ready to start school when we left that day...little did she know, her start date was right around the corner!  I was so pleased with the school and think it will be a great fit for Emerson.  I know Danny and I are so happy we made that decision back in April!!

A Preschool Cook-Out

September 5th, the Anderson family hosted a "get to know your classmates" cook-out at their house (each family is responsible for one social function during the school year).  It was nice to get together with other families and meet the kids that are going to be in Emerson's class. Emerson and Haegan palled around a lot, but they did branch out and play with the other kids.  Everyone is very nice...it is a great group of families.  


One of the mothers brought the most adorable (Martha Stewartesque) cupcakes.  I was so envious of her talents...you know this is right up my alley!  Emerson and Haegan had a great time devouring their froggy cupcake.  Who does't love a good cupcake!

We had a great time, and although I am not one for social events when I know practically no one, I did have a good time and it was nice to talk to the other moms, compare stories, and just relax for a bit.  Great start to a new school year.  I am already thinking about what we will do at the April social function we will host (I'm thinking it will have something to do with finding eggs!!). 

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Decluttering The Devers- August 2010

Alright, so now that September is almost over (yes, I have completely neglected my precious Dever Dish and only provided Wordless Wednesday posts for the past three weeks), I guess it is time to finally post my August decluttering project, that I must admit, is still a work-in-progress.  August would prove to be a big month for me.  I decided to quit my job at UNC and take a job working from home.  I had worked at UNC for 8 years and had come to mix my personal life with my work life (i.e. - I used my work computer as my personal computer, too - I'll never make that mistake AGAIN).  My email address had been the same for 8 years and switching over to a Gmail account has been a big change. But even more daunting than an email switch, was the process of transferring information from my work computers.

In April, my work computer crashed (kind of!!), it actually got a really bad virus.  I could still get in and get stuff off the computer, but couldn't use it.  My IT guy was nice enough to save it for me, so I could get all my personal information off the hard drive.  It sat at home for the longest time while I used my new work computer but since I was leaving, it had to be dealt with and so I started the process of going through my files.


My new work computer had everything from our server on it, but being the OCD person that I am.  I wanted to go through document-by-document, picture-by-picture and see if they all matched up.  So, I took on the enormous task of making sure 8 years worth of data matched from one computer to the other.  After many late nights, I was successful in transferring/matching data and I could then just deal with my new work computer and hand my old, corrupted computer back into my IT guy at work.


About a week before I was to leave my job, I started dealing with taking my documents and pictures off my new work computer and putting them on a hard drive, along with transferring all my email to a .pst file.  Once I was sure I had everything, I brought it home and began the process of moving everything onto our house desktop.  A big task, yet again!!  The two biggest concerns here were my pictures and my Outlook email files; both transferred/matched successfully!!!  I turned my new work computer in with confidence that I had all my data either on my home computer or on a hard drive.  I'm not going to say it is completely organized, but it's at least in one of two places.



And, because my new motto is not to mix my personal and work computers EVER AGAIN.  Danny surprised me during tax-free weekend in August with a new toy.  I now have my own personal laptop to do my photo editing, emailing, surfing the web, etc.  I must admit, in the thick of changing jobs and starting a new one,  I haven't had much time to play around with my Mac yet.  I need some pointers, but I am slowly learning.  I think once I get the hang of it, I am going to love it (already do).  I also purchased Lightroom, a software for photo editing and organization.  I was able to get a staff discount from UNC and purchase it for 1/3 of the cost from Adobe.  My last perk at UNC before leaving!!  I can't wait to start playing and experimenting. 


The daunting process!!!

So, although some of you might think August's Decluttering wasn't really a declutter, I will certainly say it was.  I have also added my new position's computer to the mix, but I am being very careful not to mix in any personal stuff there.  I am keeping it strictly business!!

Quick side note: Not sure why I called myself Mommy in all these pictures..seems odd that I wouldn't just say Brooke, since the post had nothing to do with Emerson.  I guess I call myself Mommy more than I realize!!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Show-and-Tell #'s 52, 53, & 54

I am pretty far behind in blogging (more than three weeks worth).  So to kill three birds with one stone (I've always hated that saying....I don't condone killing birds, but it gets my point across), I have decided to combine the last three Show-and-Tells into one blog post!!!



Show-and-Tell #52
Chloe
September 3, 2010
Chloe, or Lola as I called her, was my childhood dog.  She was a present from my mom and dad for Christmas my freshmen year of high school.  She was so cute and so cuddly, she was also pretty feisty and sometimes it was debatable if she was sweet or not.  Hogan and Chloe had a love/hate relationship; to be honest, my dad had that same love/hate relationship with Chloe.  She LOVED my mom, and you could usually find Chloe in my mom's lap or at the bottom of her bed. Anyway, while we had Chloe, one of my mom's nurses gave her this Ty Beanie Baby cocker spaniel.  This beanie baby sat on my mom's desk in her office for years.  Recently, in preparation for her retirement in December, my mom started to clean out her office.  She brought home "Chloe" and gave her to Emerson.  Emerson knows about Chloe and knows that before she was born, Chloe had to go to heaven. (We had to put Chloe to sleep a couple of years ago; that was a very sad day in the Bandy/Dever households).  So, recently Chloe has become a regular in the plethora of animals that sleep with Emerson.  We miss Chloe so much, I am pretty sure Emerson would have loved her, especially since she loves any dog she sees.  Miss you bunches, Lola!!!!
(Not the best picture of Chloe but still cute!!!)

Show-and-Tell #53
Belle
September 10, 2010
I was out of town on this date, and Danny had Emerson all by himself.  I must say, he did a great job, much to my worry.  It was Emerson's first week of preschool (which meant a new routine), first soccer practice, and dance class.  I was a very organized mom, and laid out everything for him by day, including all school outfits, soccer outfits, book bags, Show-and-Tell items, dance outfits, shoes, underwear, forms that had to be turned in, etc.  I didn't, however, remember to tell him to take a picture of Emerson on Show-and-Tell day, and I had the camera with me in Richmond.  So, needless to say, we don't have a picture of Emerson with her new beloved Belle, that was brought to her by her dad after his last trip.  We are quickly growing the princess collection in the Dever household.  



Show-and-Tell #54
Lambie
September 17, 2010
Lambie was given to Emerson by her Mimi when she was an infant and has been a permanent fixture on Emerson's dresser ever since.  You may remember a post, a long time ago, about Emerson and her first AMEN.  We started praying every night using Lambie, because when you press Lambie's belly, she starts in with our nighttime prayer.....

Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray the lord my soul to keep
May angels watch me through the night
Until I wake with mornings light

Wordless Wednesday: It's hard to potty in a princess dress!!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Monday, September 6, 2010

Swim Lessons 2010: Round 2, Week 3

Ahh...back again with the last installment of Emerson's summer swim lessons....are you sick of these posts yet?  To be honest, I am a little sick of writing them so I am going to make this short and sweet.  (There's a surprise at the end, once you make it through all the pictures, hint: video!!!)

August 9, 2010 (Monday)

You know the drill: arms, legs, back, etc!!!

Jumping sequence - 
Emerson's favorite part of every lesson!!

Playtime with Daddy after her lesson, wait, maybe this is Emerson's favorite part of every lesson!!

A splash contest with Daddy...they both won and 
got each other soaked!!

My Favorites from the day!!!!


August 11, 2010 (Wednesday)

More routine: arms, legs, back, kicking, etc.

Blowing Bubbles!!!!!

Playing on the stairs!

LAST. JUMP. SEQUENCE. OF. THE. SUMMER!!!

Getting her second "Pike/Eel" certificate of the summer!!

My Favorite from the day!!!
 


....And can you believe it?  Drum roll please...A VIDEO!!!

Hope you've enjoyed Emerson's swim lesson journey as much as we did.  Emerson did a great job her first time around.  We know eventually she will be a little fish!!  
So, until next summer.....