Tag Archives: Beetle

Just a Day

04-09-27 Just a Day

Football Sunday is over and it is back to school for all of us. Beetle is very much like her mother; she likes her sleep. The routine is that after Gert prepares herself for the day, I awake Beetle. She did not want to get up today. It was almost as if she said, “Why can’t every day be the weekend?” Ah, to be so innocent again.

Beetle was congested again this morning. The poor girl can not shake Snuffy. She hasn’t learned to blow her nose yet, so Gert suctions out her mucus. The job isn’t done until my dear wife makes certain I have seen what has come out of our cherub’s nose. πŸ™

Off we went to the day care. It seems like the majority of the students in Beetle’s room arrive at the same time. Gert is good at knowing everyone’s name. I just fawn over the one I know.

We don’t like leaving her and I know we both stole a few peeks in the window as we left . . . just to make sure.

Then it was off to the what makes the weekends so good. After several hours of that and a few errands after work, it was back home to the Doodlelebug. She had had another good day at school. She is a straight A student, methinks. πŸ™‚

She was a bit whiny in the late afternoon. She doesn’t cry like she used to. She has learned to have a small moan to get her way. But she understands what she is doing. When called on it, she straightens up and acts wonderfully. She definitely has an attention span.

We had dinner: spaghetti for the adults, milk for the child. Afterwards, Gert brushed Beetle’s scalp . . . errr . . . hair. The brush is cute with a ladybug on it. Beetle seems to like the primping, which can only spell disaster for later on. I’ll have to head that off. πŸ™‚ Beetle’s hair was washed and she is now ready for bed. I read her Little Duck Lost, a story I had read to her when she was in the womb. She likes the story. Gert followed with the musical prayer of the night. Then a bottle and bed.

Another positive day.


04-09-05 Beetle Post

Beetle continues to grow. Gert observed today that when Beetle first came home, her feet did not reach the foot area of her swing. She now fills her swing and we are close to making the adjustment so she sits up more in it.

We had a good visit with Grammy Owens. We had photographs of her and Beetle, but they were taped over when we ran out of tape at the baptism. So, before Grammy went back to Hurricane Alley, we took some more. Beetle likes her grandmother!

This past week Beetle had a doctor’s visit. Our little girl is now not so. She weighed in at a robust 11 pounds, 12 ounces. My my! We are convinced that the formula is responsible for this. Damn hospital couldn’t wait another 12 hours b4 starting the formula. Then when we had her off, the pediatrician said she wasn’t gaining enough weight. Uh huh . . . no wonder our country is so overweight. Anyhow, she is doing well. She is now 21.75 inches long.

At her doctor’s appointment, Beetle received several shots. These are just her immunizations. Beetle had mixed feelings about being at the doctor’s office. Well, actually, she screamed pretty much through the entire experience. The poor girl.

This week will be a big change for all of us. Even though I have been working and my district began before Labor Day (it’s criminal), this week, Gert and I both work, so Beetle is off to Grammy Robertson’s on Tuesday. I think Gert is going to have more problems with this than anyone else. πŸ™‚ Our little girl is growing up!


04-08-22 Beetle's Baptism

Today was Beetle’s big day! Lots of preparations still needed to be made when we awoke. I bolted out and mowed the lawn. Gert, Mom, and I scurried around the house, vacuuming, dusting, tidying up, etc. A little after 11:00, the caterer (Sharon from Deek’s Deli) arrived with the food. With time elapsed for any more last minute cleaning, we left for church. We brought along Beetle’s dress to change into after mass.

We were confused when mass began. Father Carmel, the priest that got Gert and me to attend this church, left three weeks ago for another parish. He was replaced by Father Paul. Father Paul seems like a fine man. He performed the mass three weeks ago. He did not stand at the exit, so we did not meet him. He has not performed a mass we have attended since. A recruit from Gloucester Catholic did the noon mass. Much to our surprise, mass was over in far less than an hour. Father David (the associate priest) was johnny-on-the-spot for a 1:00 baptism. The problem was, the baptism was supposed to be at 1:15.

This after mass service, was not our preference. There were to be two other babies baptized, but only one showed. An awkward service soon began and I thought it was over and done with with no water. But after a couple minutes, we moved over to the baptismal font. The tape had run out of the video camera and there was not time to do anything. Fortunately, it was re-wound and the bulk of the service was captured.

The service was a bit clunky: we were told what to say and when to say it. The arrangement of the family was odd and made it difficult for some to see. But in the end, the important thing is that Beetle is now part of the club!

After the service, we all came back to the house to feast on far too much food. We’ll be eating pasta, chicken, and cold cuts for a month!

Yeah, Life Is Happening

04-08-18 Beetle Update

Our little girl is growing!

During the last week or so, Gert and I have noticed that Beetle is no longer the little girl we brought home from the hospital. Physically, she has filled out. She has baby fat and her face is definitely round. Emotionally, although she still cries, she doesn’t seem to do this without cause. She is eating plenty and when she is hungry, she certainly let’s us know. But when she isn’t hungry, she is settling down to enjoying herself. She is awake more these days and that allows us to play.

Yesterday we noticed that Beetle is beginning to talk. No, not words, but she is making noises other than cries. She seems to be relating to us with voice. Yesterday she was very active in this. Today she has spoken some, but not as much as yesterday.

Life is busy for us. Gert is perpetually tired. We moved Beetle out of our room and into the nursery. It is so cute in there (yes, I will take a photograph and post it soon). She seems to have taken pretty well to her room. When asleep, she seems to turn sideways in the crib. We often come in to find Dootlebug with her feet smushed up to the side of the crib and her head off the mat we have for her. She seems content, but it is odd. While Beetle can sleep through the night, most nights she is up once for a feeding. She seems to do well with this. On occasion, she will have a particularly rough night, but those are dwindling.

I have found that a lot of adult conversation when one has a child revolves around excrement. This is not my favorite topic. Nonetheless, it is a prominent activity for Beetle. I recall a Bill Cosby routine where he spoke about how for the first week or so parents are so proud of their children when they go, but soon enough they discover it smells. Well, I think it has smelled all along, but what has become apparent is that our precious girl is no lady. She seems to toot quite a bit and it smells. Think of a bunch of middle-aged men drinking beer and eating spicy food. Beetle would out-do these men. πŸ™ In addition, her messes are legendary! As she has grown older, the violence with which she lets go is astonishing. Last evening we showed up to meet some people and as we took Beetle out of the car seat, we notice poop everywhere. She hadn’t said a word, cried a cry, etc. to let us know. She seems to like it. Mind you, should you try to get the little stinker into a bath, she will pitch a fit that cannot be believed.

Earlier in the week, a couple friends of mine from my former school came by to visit. It is always good to catch up with friends. Rita, seen here holding Beetle, is a big Bruce fan. Despite knowing better, she is going to see him on the “Get Rid of Bush” tour. I am so disappointed.

Last evening we drove to Cape May again. A friend of Gert’s is in town with her one-year old and family and we went down to spend some time with them. They were at the Jetty Motel. The beach in that area has changed. It used to be that one really had to walk back inland to get to the beach to walk out to the lighthouse. No more. The beach is built up with sand dunes and beach grass. In addition, there is a pavilion on the beach. A bunch of folks were there. A few people were playing guitars and everyone was singing church songs. Afterwards, there was a flag ceremony to bring down Old Glory from the pole. This was really nice as we watched the sun set over the bay with the lighthouse coming to life.

The thought of strolling the boardwalk with the babies was quickly erased. A.J. was Mr. Fussy and would have none of it. Beetle fed off the screaming and acted up some herself. This was, of course, after the clean up from the eruption down below. We caught up with Kendra and decided it was time to go. We took a spin by the old homestead. Oh my! The current owners have raised our house eight feet or so. At first I thought they had added a second story over the living room. They built up the brick steps in the front and added brick to the Jefferson St. entrance. That looks nice, but the flower beds are still whitewashed. It looks weird seeing the house that high up.

Today, Jesse and Amanda came for a visit. Amanda is now working at a newly opened restaurant in town that we went to last week and that we plan to take my mom and Mom and Dad to during the next week. A friend of mine from work gave us two outfits for Beetle. Both are Phillies outfits. Oh, they are so cute! She knows I am a big baseball fan. I can’t wait to see Beetle in her uniform. πŸ™‚

We are eagerly awaiting Mom’s arrival tonight. We had some rain earlier, but I hope that doesn’t interfere with the flight, which is due in at 10 this evening.

Foul Ball!

04-08-10 GCK629

39.55775 -75.368333

Last evening Mopar finally got on the stick and began approving caches that had backed up a week. There are still some that have not been approved, but at least something is going on. DiscGolfer has placed numerous caches around Pt. Pleasant. We’ll probably take a ride up there next week.

Anyhow, there is one new one around here.

I went to sleep thinking I would get on the road at 5:30 with Beetle in tow. Well, Gert had other thoughts about that. So, it was more like 6:30 before we got out. πŸ˜‰

Downtown Alloway is always a treat. I had passed this field several times b4, but never stopped. It’s a municipal field after all. There is a wonderful house directly across the street from the ballfield. Pretty amazing house for an area that gets plenty of traffic. Instead of driving right to the woods’ edge as I am certain most will do, I parked in the gravel. I unlatched Beetle and we were off . . . for our 365 foot journey.

It was through about five feet of brush to a clearing. Errr . . . thankfully an ammo box. So few caches are hidden with ammo boxes that I appreciated it. Sure, the cache was not hidden, but rather dropped at the base of a tree.

How about them apples?

Kylie’s The Leader

04-08-06 GCJR6M

39.3835 -74.566417

After finding The Gold Coast, Beetle and I tried to determine what to do next. Great Egg Cache was what we had originally thought, but Justa Walkin’ the Dog was closest, but there was also Kylie is the Leader. After mulling it over, we decided to do this one. I felt it was the most suitable for a stroller.

So off we took . . . through the goose poop . . . eight-wheelin’ it over limb, down the hills, etc. I picked the correct trail and was rewarded with an easy find. Beetle woke up for the event and we got a couple photographs together b4 she fell back into her slumber.

I left a note in the “log” (a few post-it notes) about the holiday cache that no one ever seeks in the same park. We shall see if anyone ever goes for it.

The Gold Coast Cache

04-08-06 GCK0W5

39.346317 -74.555717

So, the YJTB saga continues. The one dropped in Maurice River Bluffs disappeared. The one in the Mantua MambaJamba disappeared. Then Rippietoe dropped one in the Kindest Kids cache. Gert, Beetle, and I rushed right out there. No dice. We came home and found Dave picked it up. I am certain the YJTB was never in the cache. I wrote a note explaining how we had rushed right out. So, he gave me the heads up on dropping it back off a few days later. I rushed out again only to find no YJTB. Sigh . . . . well, I guess he was late in placing it. Lovely. I made a third trip to find it and sure enough, it was there. But this was less than satisfying. I hadn’t really found it in the wild.

So, there was this one dropped off two days ago by my favorite out-of-state hider. I decided to take Beetle along and we would find a few caches. We drove over in the afternoon. The view is lovely from this spot. We found the cache easily. And sure enough there was still a YJTB. I decided to take it.

Wednesday, 4 August

Today Beetle made an important discovery: passing gas while taking a bath creates bubbles. Oh, the things our little girl learns each day! πŸ™‚

Beetle has been in her nursery the last couple days. It is not completed (still needs the closet painted), but it is almost done. I think Gert appreciates the sleep with Beetle in her own room.

We finally received the photographs of Beetle taken when she was released from the hospital. The company the hospital uses does not have a good reputation. A couple we met never received their photos. Ours took five weeks, a couple phone calls, and they printed the wrong photograph. The lack of attention to detail these days is frustrating me to no end. We are using the photos they sent. I have video of the photo shoot and know which was the first photo taken. Oh well . . . she still looks cute! Look for your announcements soon.

Monday night, Gert, Bob, and I attended Beetle’s pre-baptism class. We have been informed that the baptism will not be during the mass, but rather in a special service after mass. It will begin at 1:15 PM. The joys of re-scheduling because we have a new priest.

We’ll be having a little get-together after the baptism. I think we counted 25 people coming. What fun!

It’s been nice having a couple days off. I will be back in to work on Monday. I was able to sneak out yesterday to go kayaking with a couple guys I know. We paddled down the Oswego River about five miles. It was a lot of fun. The number of pitcher plants along the river was great.

Busy Days for the Owens Family

04-08-01 Busy Days for the Owens Family

Beetle turned one month old today. To celebrate, we took a trip to Cape May. Gert and I had been discussing the Ugly Mug and we were both looking to get out of the house and do something fun. So off we took down Rt. 47. We eventually got there, found a parking spot, fed the meter, and began strolling the mall. Ah, this Middle America stuff feels pretty good. We waited for a seat out on the mall along with all the other families. Having the cutest baby in the world opens one up to passerbys. People kept coming up to us to ask about Beetle. “How old is she?” “She is so cute!” “Look at the baby!” Beetle is a star and everyone loves her. Move over Raymond.

The liquor store attached to the Mug has been converted into a dining area. The Mug is no longer the bar it once was. It is a little more upscale. There is still a little section where one can get packaged goods, but that is ancillary to the food production. The wall between the store and the bar has been knocked down to a chair wall. The whole place is bright. No, our Ugly Mug is long gone.

We eventually were seated. It felt good to be out in public. Summer school for me only had one more day and it was a celbration for me too. We feasted on mozzarella sticks, steamed clams (which always reminds me of Nana), cheesesteaks and fish sandwiches. I even had a beer! As soon as the bill was paid and we rose to leave, a fierce seagull swooped down and gobbled up a french fry that was left on the plate. Ah, I love the shore!

We strolled the mall. We definitely have the “in” stroller. There were four others just like that we saw. πŸ™‚ We then headed up to the boardwalk. We rolled down Ocean Ave., passed the Queen Victoria. We told Beetle all about our honeymoon (well, maybe not all) and our lovely stay there. It was up to the boards. Gert was tired by then. Her stitches still bother her. I made a quick dash into Morrow’s for some Swedish fish. They remind me of Dad. I enjoyed them. The beach is so peaceful in the evening. After a bit, it was time to get home. This Middle America family tires early and it was about 10 o’clock when we crashed after an eventful evening.

Friday turned out to be just as busy. Summer school ended (hooray) and I scurried home. After doing some things around home, we prepared for Beetle’s photo shoot. As part of the package we purchased at the hospital, we had a “free” sitting at Sears along with a “free” 8×10. Everything with the hospital photographs has gone wrong. It’s a month now and we still do not have them. We met another couple who never got their pictures (families with babies seem to meet each other. It is an interesting phenomenon that I have picked up on). Phone calls have been made and promises made, but we still do not have our photos. Anyhow, we have more hope with Sears. We arrived early, but it was obvious there was no one else around. Gert changed Beetle’s outfit. Then the fun began.

Beetle seems to have the behaviors of a professional model down. Until she was completely satisfied, she would not cooperate. While Gert would prefer she not, I kept extolling the virtue of being a professional model. I explained to Beetle that if she worked really hard at it, she would be able to provide for her two overworked parents so we didn’t need to work anymore. And if she did really well, she herself, could retire at age 23. We shall see.

The photographer was very patient. It is difficult to get Beetle to smile, let alone in the direction of the camera. There were a couple different poses with a couple different backgrounds. I think a third was wanted, but by that time Beetle was done. With the digital photography, we were able to see the shots immediately and we knew there were a couple shots that were acceptable.

While there I finally understood something that had always intrigued me. Families with small children always seem to have an incredible amount of stuff with them. Diaper bags, toys, strollers, etc. We are no different. When we were through, off came the christening dress, on went her regular clothes, then Where’s the binky?, Is her hat there?, I can’t find the camera, etc. Sigh . . . I do not like having all that stuff with us.

The promotion worked, and we knew it would. We purchased some other photographs and even signed up for the Smile Savers plan. We will not need to pay the sitting fees for the next two years. Even if we only do a Christmas and birthday photo each year, we will be ahead of the game. Something tells me that we will have more photos taken than just those, however. After the photo shoot, it was off to Grammy and Poppy’s for a visit. Beetle always enjoys visiting with her grandparents!

Summer vacation is finally here. Kind of . . . Teaching is finally done and I am taking a few days off before I go in and begin the arduous task of updating 300 systems for 1 September. Pheeeewwww . . . Saturday morning arrived and I was eager to get going. Yes, I was going to actually go out and do a little geocaching today. There has not been much time in the last couple months for this. For the uninitiated, caching is using a set of coordinates to find something. Most times, a GPSr is used to locate an ammo box in the woods. But since Beetle and Gert would be accompanying me, we decided to do a few that were in parks instead. On a regular caching day, I would be up b4 dawn and ready. When caching with a baby, feeding has to occur, clothes need to be changed, bags packed, etc. By the time all that happend, the diaper needs to be changed and lo and behold, Beetle needs to be fed again. Patience . . . We evantually got going around 11:00. Caching with family is different. We took the scenic ride through Salem County out to the Delaware River. By the time we arrived at the first stop, a short stroll through a historical society’s grounds to the river, Beetle needed to be fed. We had made a couple stops on our way out. Gert waited in the car and I darted out to find the cache. Once everyone was ready, we went to a park where another cache was hidden. The bandstand was jumping with a band and a huge cookout for some group. We found the cache and rolled up to the river where there was a bench. Fathers long to play catch with their sons. Mothers cannot await their daughter’s recitals. I longed to share my pastime with Beetle We had found the cache at the children’s area of the park (not a good place to hide one, fwiw) and I was so excited that my little girl was with me. Her response? She slept through the entire episode. Sigh . . .

One might wonder how I was able to hook my reluctant wife to go caching with me. Well, the promise of a Cracker Barrel meal is always a good hook. We were really close to the only Cracker Barrel near us, so we went. Again, Beetle was the hit of the party. The family seated near us were very much enamored with our little pumpkin. Even though the food took forever, we had a fine time in the olde tyme restaurant. After our chicken sandwiches, we made short order of two more caches before driving home.

Our priest is being transferred. We are saddened by that. Saturday’s mass was to be his last, so we wanted to go to that one. We also wanted to get a card and a small gift for all he has done for us. So, on our way home from caching, we made a quick stop. Gert ran in while I waited with the sleeping Beetle. When Gert came back to the truck, she mentioned that thought it smelled musty. I didn’t smell anything. We continued on toward home. Gert made another comment. I agreed. I suggested that perhaps Beetle spit up. Gert leaned back and said, “Oh, no!” She brought Beetle’s rattle (a stuffed bear with a Beetle bib) to the front seat. It was covered in poop. We both knew that if the bear was covered, so was Beetle.

A minute or two later we were home. Yes indeed, there was poop everywhere. We hurried Beetle inside. Gert put her on the changing pad, undid her dress, opened her diaper, and . . . I nearly threw up! The amount, the consistency, the color of what was unleashed was horrific. Our little girl had an adult sized bowel movement! Oh my!

I know that Gert is my soul mate. She was stout throughout the entire ordeal. Me? I squealed. Gert is so good with Beetle and in no time all was calm. We went to mass and unlike the first time Beetle attended church, she was fussy. The Saturday mass is right smack in the middle of her fussy time, so it was not real surprising. There was a reception for Fr. Carmel afterwards. He blessed Beetle. She took no notice. πŸ™

Having a baby is grand. Beetle definitely rules the coop. So much so that ‘Nado has changed her ways. The cat does not receive the attention she once did. She sees me holding Beetle all the time, stroking her head, rocking her, etc. ‘Nado now permits me to hold her. Yes, she is becoming a lap cat. I have longed for this since she was a little black terror. ‘Nado is inquisitive. She keeps coming up to Beetle. She sniffs and I think would nestled up to her, but whenever she gets close, Beetle flails her arms, screams, makes a sudden movement, etc. Not so much because of the cat, but because that is what she does. ‘Nado runs away each time. πŸ™‚ Ah, the love of two sisters.

Middle America is pretty good!

The River with a View

04-07-31 GCJJ0X

39.65835 -75.522617

After finding the Other Beach cache, the Fro Family drove south to get this one. We unpacked the stroller and walked around. The cache placement is horrible (on a children’s ride). Sigh . . . I retrieved it and walked up to the river to be with Gert and Beetle. Ah, another cache for the one-month old. She slept through the whole adventure. πŸ™‚ We enjoyed ourselves but when it came time to return the cache, it was impossible as there were children on the ride. We waited a while and it finally cleared.

The bandstand was being used by a group today. There was a band playing You Shook Me when we made it back to the truck. They sounded really good. It was off to Cracker Barrel for a family meal.