Summer List: Muffin Tin Monday


Per our Summer List, Muffin Tin Monday!

The crafty girl in me just can't pass up some artfully arranged veggies and fruit. Muffin Tin Monday called my name from the first moment I saw it. No, I did not do the "theme" nor did I actually use a muffin tin, but the idea is the same and the boy loved it!


3 Arms.


Averill and I were having a conversation about a new blog I found. A girl who has multiple food allergies and is anaphylactic to nuts, potato's, and fish (whew, I know!). Her blog is a compilation of situations she has been in and managed, specifically around dining out, parties, and pot-lucks with her food allergies. I was telling Averill about some of her dining experiences when Alec piped in...

very concerned he asked, "but mama, does she have three arms?"

"ummm", I thought. "nope, I think she has the requisite two, why sweetie?"

confused, Alec says, "but how does she wear three allergy [medical alert] bracelets?"

"Ahhh" we laugh, "yes, she has three allergies, but she probably has them all listed on one bracelet"

what a smart cookie.


Gotta love the Canadians.


Look what we got in the mail!

Yep, a great big basket of candy. Grammy sent it to us from peanutfreeplanet. It was stuffed full of candy bars, chocolate pieces and gum. Alec was in heaven! Most of the food they sell on comes from Canada. Why Canada? For some reason that country is much better about having and maintaining nut free environments for food. There are many foods (like Quaker Granola Bars) that are contaminated here in the US but if you purchase them from Canada they are safe to eat. Why? I have no idea. But we are very thankful that our northern neighbors are so much more progressive with their production control.

Thanks Grammy, it won't last long but I promise, we will enjoy every bite :)


Happy Fathers Day!


To my father, my husband, and my friends and family who are dads... Have a wonderful day. Here is a little video (albeit totally unrelated) to make you smile on your special day.

I know, he is the cutest thing ever.


Poor Fishies.


We purchased 2 more fish as buddies for the singleton living in our backyard pond. Alec named them Bark (the orange one) and concrete (the red and white one). It reminds me of my childhood fish that I named with equal silliness - Paul, after my dad, and Fluffy. I wonder, did I really get the ironicy at that age?

After we released our captive little swimmers into the wide open space that is our murky, sometimes stinky pond, we stood back to watch them swim around the large plumes of green algae. Alec said, "WOW, mama! Look at all that allergy! Poor little fishes".

It was so cute, I didn't even correct him.


Goodbye WorWic.


As I mentioned, Alec's last day at WorWic was this past Thursday. He has been going there since the fall of 2006 and they have been instrumental in our growth as a nut-allergic family in the last 3 years. To say thank you for all they have done for Alec and for us, I made a scrapbook for them. The book has 30 pages, most all laid out the same way. I had it printed at VioVio as a 6x9 soft-cover book. It was a huge hit and when we were done saying our goodbye's we were all in tears.

(under your watchful and caring eyes, I have had a 1st day)

(under your watchful and caring eyes, I have gone on field trips)

(under your watchful and caring eyes, I have been thankful)

(Alec Awards)

If you want to see the whole book you can download the .pdf here. View it using Adobe Acrobat Reader with continuous pages selected. This was such a fun project and VioVio did a great job printing.


Beach with the K's


It was supposed to be the OC air show, and we did get to see a couple of cool jets, the weather however got very foggy and about an hour into the show the planes stopped flying. We took advantage of the beach and time with family.

As a side note: comments should be up and running again. Thanks for your patience :)


Summer Traditions.


Summer has officially begun here at the Anderson house. We are already into the second week of June and Thursday is Alec's last day at school - the end of the preschool era for him! To celebrate summer's start, we brought out the poster board and made our annual Summer List.
We did this last year and it was such a fun project to do as well as to look over and cross things off as the summer went on. All three of us listed things we wanted to do this summer, some fun, some "to-do" items, and some just random-if-we-get-to-it stuff. You can see, the boy is very proud of the creation...

Because of the gigantic artwork (notice the little stick-figure family) we opted to put only some things on the actual poster board and keep a running list of everything else. So here it is, the official, ever-changing, and most likely will not all happen...

50(ish) SUMMER THINGS...

make pinwheels
tie dye shirts
make rain sticks
make ribbon streamers
paint pet rocks
make a pinata for Alec's birthday
make goo-blec or homemade playdoh with sparkles in it
make plant pot wind chimes
create mini-me art work
work on a family summer scrapbook
have and host game night
play with sprinklers, slip & slide, & squirt guns
have a water balloon fight
fly kites
ride bikes - hopefully get Alec's training wheels off
bake colorburst cupcakes
build a lego table
play with sidewalk chalk
have field day games
go to the free movie festival
go bowling
learn to swim without swimmies (Alec that is)
join the summer reading program at the library
play tennis & rqt. ball
visit cape may
visit the baltimore planetarium, imax and science center
ride go carts
go to frountier town or killians water parks
celebrate a 5-year birthday
read my camera manual again
have a scrapbooking day/evening
go golfing
build a trellis planter
finish the kitchen
finish the outside of the house
go to bush gardens or water country
have a "going to kindergarten" celebration
visit with friends
participate in muffin-tin-monday
make ice cream & have a marble slab party
break out the sewing machine and make a camera strap and cloth napkins
learn elements (preferably before my class starts)
celebrate our 7-year anniversary
start practicing with bento lunches
make a book list for paperback swap

have play dates
Jet Skiis


Car Show


We took Alec to the OC car and truck show this weekend. Wow, he was blown away. For a kid totally fascinated with cars (especially Mustangs and Corvettes) he was beside himself. It was amazing.

posing by the Ferrari

look at the tires on this Escalade

The Boys favorite Mustang in the whole place

Just about every car here had a trunk full of audio equipment...
brings me back to the days...

The Boy just about passed out when he saw the dragster

Up close and personal with the Cobra

Off to lunch at Secrets, mmm yummy


Today I won the Lottery.


We decided! We have a school! I did not post about every school we went to visit but we ended up looking at just about 10, both public and private. When you have a nut allergic kindergartner the conversations about how good the school is revolve primarily around how safe they are and only secondarily around the curriculum. I had just about decided that homeschooling kindergarten was the best choice until our first choice called. We had been on a waiting list for this school since January and had all but written them off. Now, they have a place for us! The highlights are that they operate as either half day or full day, so to start we do not have to worry about Alec eating lunch there and can eventually opt for a full day as we all get more comfortable.

This week I went to fill out all the registration papers and per usual, got into a conversation with the administrator about Alec’s nut allergy. We went through all the bits…

Where are the epi’s stored and who has the key to the cabinet?
What happens when she is not in the building?
How is everyone trained and who trains the substitute teacher?
What happens at snack time and who is responsible for bringing the snacks?
Where is the freezer so we can keep safe cupcakes for party time?
Where are the bathrooms so if he passes out in one he can be found quickly?
What should I include in my letter to the kindergarten class about bringing safe snacks?

You know, all the questions that have now become commonplace. The conversation was going very well and I was very pleased with how prepared they already were. Then, the woman I was speaking with mentioned that her grandson was just diagnosed (at 9) with a nut allergy and how her daughter-in-law was just about to go off the deep end. This is unfortunately a feeling I, and most parents of nut allergic children, am familiar with. We spent the next whole hour talking about the feelings, the stress, and how to trust anyone other than yourself with your child after you are told they have the potential to die within 30 seconds of ingesting a food that is everywhere. It was a fantastic conversation. It was so good to be able to reassure this grandmother that A. her daughter-in-law would eventually get better at managing this, and B. that they would be able to go out to dinner again. But, even more importantly, in that one relatively short conversation I got totally present to just how far I, we, our family, has come in the last three years.

Today I feel like I have won the lottery.


Comedy at its finest.


Alec is telling jokes now. And, boy will he will laugh, he thinks he is hilarious! They go something like this...

Alec: "Daddy, how did the pumpkin get in the boys pants?"
Ave: "How?"
Alec: "Because he had poop on his nose! Ahhhh, hahahaha"


Alec: "knock, knock"
Me: "who's there?"
Alec: "knock, knock"
Me: "who's there?"
Alec: "switch"
Me: "switch who?"
Alec: "switch who bumped his head and fell in the towel. AHHHhhahahahah!"

Dane Cook - watch out!

I remember my brother doing this, laughing and laughing at himself even though the jokes made no sense. I also remember that moment, riding in the car on the way to dinner, that very moment when he told his first joke that made sense. The shock was overwhelming. My brother is still telling jokes and mostly now they all have a true punchline. It will be interesting to see if Alec's comedy blossoms in the same way.


A little taste of Nigeria ...


After two weekends of back-to-back yard sales keeping with Laura's New Year's resolution to PURGE; I have found myself listing some of the remaining household items from the yard sale online, using one of our local news station websites, WBOC's Classifieds, and our local Craigslist.
I have had a lot of people viewing my listing, but no one has seemed really intersted in buying anything until yesterday. I received an email from a person expressing interest in the ad for the trash bin that we have listed for $25. This trash bin is one of those stand alone cabinet like contraptions which houses the trash can inside it so you don't see the actual trash can until you open the drawer. Here is the initial email inquiry I received:

" Just a note to show my interest in your advert , kindly let me know the actual selling cost and the present condition,Perhaps more pics if available... My method of payment will be by Check or Money Order drawn from a US bank and it will surely clear fine ,Shipping is not a problem, I will make arrangement on the shipment.. I have a shipping company that will take care of the shipment.
If you are ok with the transaction and you're honest in selling to me,Kindly email me with the Information above to my email address ( )...Awaiting your swift Response.Thank You.RegardsMr Alex Ferguson :

A few odd references, but being excited that I might get rid of something else from my garage and make some cash at the same time got my attention. Interested in possibly movin this trash bin, I reply back giving some of the requested information, regarding contact information and requesting a Money Order as form of payment. A few hours later I get the following reply:

"Thanks for the mail, I really appreciate your prompt reply and i'm glad you are selling to me... First,I'm okay with the selling cost, secondly i don't want you to bother about the shipping process,I have a shipping company that handles my shipments,All you need do is to keep the item in a safe and good condition.

I will instruct my staff associate to issue out a check for the payment and shipping to you, When you get the payment you are to deduct your selling cost for the item and send the remaining funds to my shipper via Western Union or Money Gram to enable him come down to your location for the pickup. I bought some other mechandise too and my shipper will be picking them up also,so they will need the remaining funds to enable them come for the pickup. It takes 1-2 working days to clear a check, so check must clear before pickup. Notify me immediately when you get the funds so i will email you with my shipper's information who will be coming for the pickup at your location. "I HOPE I CAN TRUST YOU WITH MY FUNDS", you are to also deduct $100 from the money for the stress and hazzle you may go through in cashing and wire the remaining funds to my shipper... I'm sure you can await the payment in the mail, It will be sent to the Information you provided for me. Can you remove it from the posting and consider it sold to me? I will be happy if you can do that today ok..I will be looking forward to read from you. Regards, Alex Ferguson"

After reading his email, it quickly became clear that this bonehead was trying to scam me. Despite the fact that a lot of people do not write gramatically correct and can't spell; his use of the word "hazzle" instead of "hassle" combined with the US Bank reference and the overall idea that this person would want to pay $125 for the trash bin I have listed for $25 convinced me that this guy is wack. I did not notice the final piece of info until getting his reply back, but there was an IP address at the very bottom of his email
" : ." I looked up the WHO IS information to trace this IP Address and sure enough the IP Location is Nigeria Lagos Ipnx Nigeria Limited .
So long story longer ... even selling something as inocuous as a trash bin for $25 on my local classified ads brings out the scam artists ...

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