Monday, June 29, 2009

July Update

Health: I am completely over my pnumonia!!! I finished my antibiotic on Thursday and my cough is pretty much gone! Aila went right back to nursing with absolutely no problems (Praise the Lord!) and I am finally getting my energy back.

Louisiana: Still no news. We don't expect to hear anything until January now.

House: Still up for a short sale. Our first offer backed out becasue the bank took too long to look at it. The bank is looking at the second offer right now. If that one is not accepted we have 2 more for them to look at so we'll see.

Kids: Aila walked from one couch to the other last week! Since then she has tried to walk every day and has fallen flat on her face every time. Logan's new obsession right now is Elmo and he also loves putting his toys in time out. LOL

Here is my new "mommy card". gave me 200 free business cards so I made a card to hand out to mom friends to set up play dates. I blurred out my phone number in the picture because I didn't want that on our blog:

Summer Reading Program

Today I took the kids to the library for the Summer Reading Program. Logan earned his first prize this week for reading 6 books. Logan was really excited because we met Josh and Vanessa there. Logan and Aila love, love, love them! They were so cute reading books to the kids!

Pool Party

Yesterday we had a pool party at Doug's brother's house with all our friends. We will be doing it again on Sunday at 3:00 if anyone wants to come!!! We had a blast swimming and eating BBQ. Next week Doug is going to make Carne Asada! Yummy!!!

At Fry's getting supplies:

Pool party:

Costco and Bass Pro Shop

After the Water Day we met up with my dad and went to Costco to stock up on some things. Logan loves Costco, or as he says it, "Coco". He samples everything! After Costco we all went out to eat at the Bass Pro Shop. This is one of my favorite restaurants! They have bread that tastes like cake and a rotissary chicken that is to die for. After we ate we walked around the store. Logan and Aila loved the giant fish tank and Logan loved seeing all the animals (Aila was freaked out and holding on for dear life).

Water Day

A church out by our house had a free water day this weekend. They had 2 water slides, a giant slip and slide, a bounce house, free games and food. It was super hot so it was the perfect day for it.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Granny's Last Night

Tonight was our last night to spend with Granny before she flies back to Louisiana. Logan could not wait for her to come over all day! We made her a goodbye card earlier in the day which led to Logan saying "Happy Birthday" when she came over. LOL... I bet he was wondering where the cake was! Granny played with Logan in the yard and even went down his little slide (not an easy feat!). Logan especially loved it when she put him in her big brown paper bag and carried him around the house. We are sad to see her go but we are happy for the time that we had. We will miss you!!!

Logan and Granny on the slide:

Driving Logan in his car:

Granny and Aila:

Playing in Granny's Bag:

Time to say goodbye:

2 Articles

The first one is more proof that breastfeeding rocks and the second is about a diaper alarm for potty training that absolutely cracks me up! Check it out:

Breastfeeding boosts child's school performance
Wed, Jun 17, 2009 (HealthDay News) -- Children who were breast-fed do better in high school and are more likely to go to college than their bottle-fed siblings, researchers report.

While the health benefits of breast-feeding to both infants and mothers is well known, this study suggests the practice may have educational benefits as well. This is the first study using data on siblings to examine the effect of breast-feeding on high school completion and college attendance, the researchers noted.

"We compare sibling pairs -- one of whom was breast-fed and one of whom was not, or siblings who were breast-fed for different durations -- and find consistent evidence that breast-fed children have higher high school grade point averages and a higher probability of attending college," said study co-author Joseph Sabia, an assistant professor of public policy at American University in Washington, D.C.

Since their sample contained a variety of adolescents, the researchers ruled out factors such as socioeconomic status in the connection between breast-feeding and educational achievement, Sabia said.

The report is published in the June 11 issue of the Journal of Human Capital.

For the report, Sabia and his colleague Daniel Rees, a professor of economics at the University of Colorado Denver, used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. They looked at the breast-feeding histories of 126 siblings from 59 families; high school graduation and college attendance data was obtained for 191 siblings from 90 families.

"If you're breast-fed, your high school GPA goes up substantially, and the likelihood that you go on to college goes up," Rees said.

For every month you are breast-fed, your high school GPA goes up about 1 percent and your probability of going to college goes up about 2 percent, Rees added.

"We found that more than one-half of the estimated effect of being breast-fed on high school grades can be linked to improvements in cognitive ability and health," Sabia said. "Thus, we conclude that improvements in cognitive ability and adolescent health may be important pathways through which breast-feeding affects long-term academic achievement," he said.

About one-fifth of the increased likelihood of going to college appears to be due to breast-feeding, Rees added.

"This is another benefit of breast-feeding," Rees said. "We know that breast-feeding leads to better health, higher IQ, but the next step is what are the implications, and this is an important implication," he said.

Dr. David L. Katz, director of the Prevention Research Center at Yale University School of Medicine, said this study may not prove a connection between school performance and breast-feeding, but it could be another reason to breast-feed your baby.

"An array of health benefits is convincingly associated with breast-feeding, including a reduced risk of both infections and obesity in the breast-fed child," Katz said. "Less certain, but long suggested, is enhanced cognitive development in breast-fed children as well."

It could be that factors that determine whether or not a baby is breast-fed are an important piece of the puzzle, Katz noted. "Why a baby is fed one way or another may matter as much as which way a baby is fed," he said. "A study of association such as this cannot fully resolve that issue."


Diaper alarm may help with potty training
Fri, Jun 19, 2009 (HealthDay News) -- For countless generations, parents have been trying to get toddlers to pee in the toilet. Now, Belgian researchers think they have come up with a 21st century solution -- electronics.

Researchers at the University of Antwerp are working with a diaper alarm that alerts grown-ups, especially day care attendants, when tots do their business in their diapers. The alarm emits a pleasant musical sound when wet and does not harm the kids.

The theory behind the study comes straight out of the annals of behavioral and biofeedback psychology. By responding faster to dirty diapers, attendants can give appropriate encouragement and help children focus on bladder control more efficiently, said Jean-Jacques Wyndaele, study co-author and professor of urology at the University of Antwerp.

The technique had not been tested among healthy toddlers, although alarms have been used successfully to help older children overcome bedwetting problems and teach mentally retarded children to use the toilet, Wyndaele said.

"There's overall very little research in this area," he said. "We wanted to see if this would work."

The team picked 39 healthy youngsters at several Belgian day care centers. The kids, who were 18 to 30 months old, were chosen for their relative maturity and readiness to begin toilet training.

Training started as soon as the children arrived at day care and continued throughout the day for three weeks. Special diapers made by the researchers consisted of a light alarm box attached to a self-adhesive strip in the diaper. When the strip got wet, the diaper emitted a ringing sound, and the child was taken to the potty and encouraged to finish.

Researchers rewarded their tiny test subjects if they completed their business on the toilet.

All children wore the same type diapers, but only about half wore diapers connected to the alarm box.

The alarm plus positive reinforcement seemed to work. Children wearing the alarmed diapers achieved independent bladder control nearly 52 percent of the time, researchers said. That was significantly better than the others' 8.3 percent, according to the study, published in Neurology and Urodynamics. What's more, the effects seemed to last at least two weeks beyond the test period.

One of the key advantages of the wetting alarm diaper-training method is that the child and the caregiver are immediately informed of leakage, Wyndaele said. The alarm itself distracts the child and strengthens the awareness of bladder behavior. By bringing the child to a bathroom at that moment, further reinforcement is given.

Wyndaele said the technique could be especially useful in Europe and the United States, where a large percentage of children regularly attend day care.

"The participation in the toilet-training process of the day care providers is thus valuable because they are often among the first to recognize when a child is developmentally ready to be toilet trained," he added.

And though intrigued by the study, two pediatricians in New York expressed some doubt that the Belgian method is better than the tried-and-true methods used by so many moms.

"I'm just not sure," said Dr. Marc Childs, who practices in Brewster, N.Y. "I usually find that toilet training works if you make the child think it's his need, not yours. My advice is, don't make diaper changing particularly enjoyable and reinforce others in your family when they go to the bathroom. He'll eventually get the message."

Dr. Peter Richel said that he did not see a downside to the alarm method, but would like to see more data.

"It's interesting and harmless, but the study is too small," said Richel, chief of pediatrics at Northern Westchester Hospital Center in Mount Kisco, N.Y. "Still, my philosophy is that if it doesn't cause the patient harm, then give it a shot."

Learning Games

Here are some of Logan's favorite games to play on the computer. I thought I would pass them along : )

Counting Games:

Color Games:

Shape Games:

Color & Shape Game:

Letter Games: