Monday, July 28, 2008

What We Do in the Summertime!

As you can see, reader response to the Bliss Complete Summertime Photo Contest was truly impressive! The summertime stars came out in full force for this contest, making for some fierce creative competition!

Picking a winner out of all these great entries was a tough job--but, I've done it! Enjoy all the entries and see who the WINNER is at the bottom of this post.

1. Josh & Isaac

Oh, what do you do in the summertime,
When all the world is green?
We play video games,
That have cars and planes,
On our TV with the big screen!
Is that what you do?
So do I!

2. Maureen & Her Wally World Friends

Reen's video entry can be viewed on her blog.

3. Laura & Brooke

Before (squeezing into her baby brother's size 6 mos. overalls)

Oh what do you do in the summertime,
When all the world is green?
Do you listen to Brooke,
scream and scream and scream,
for new overalls,
for that is the call,
so she can play and vedge,
in ones that won't give her a wedge,
so I look on Ebay,
And that saves the day,
As I find a new pair, in the right size,
For $3.99, I deserve a prize.
Is that what you do?
So do I.

After--Look ma, no wedgie!

Update: Now that the 'newness' of having overalls has worn off
(after wearing them for 6 days straight, even in the 95 degree heat),
Brooke has decided to mix it up a bit by now wearing a shirt OVER the overalls!

4. Meredith & Lauren

Oh, what do you do in the summertime,
When all the world is green?
Do you go for a walk,
Lick a treat when it's hot,
Or read books in a box just your size?
Is that what you do?
So do I!

5. Baba & Dipsy

Oh, what do you do in the summertime,
When all the world is green?
Do you ride a big bike,
That is hooked up to mikes,
Only stopping to find a latrine?
Is that what you do?
So do I!

6. Maureen & Kenzie

Oh what do you do in the summertime
when all of the world is green?
I save the world as Super Pup
In my cape of purple sateen!
Is that what you do?
So do I!

7. Ann, Kate, Truman, Nana & Papa

Oh What Do You Do in the Summertime
When PaPa's legs are white?
Do You r-un and scream
or cry and hide
on the beach as the waves go by?
Is that what you do ?
NO, NOT I !!!!

Oh What Do You Do In The Summertime
With tanning products galore?
Do you graciously share
or offer to help
That's Not Enough, Use More!
Is That What You Do?
So Do I!!!!

Oh What Do You Do In The Summertime
With Grand kids Ready To Work
Do You Rub and Spray
and hope for the best
And wait for the magical day?
Is that what you do?
So Do I!!

Oh What Do You Do In The Summertime

When all your work pays off
Do you clap your hands and shout for joy
And Climb up on his knee?
(oh, wait...wrong song)
Is That What You Do ?
So Do I!!!

Oh What Do You Do In The Summertime
When Pa Pa's legs are TAN
Do you go to the beach, sporting your shorts
Ready to catch a ride?
Is That What You Do?
So Do I!!!!

8. Ryan & Tess

Oh, what do you do in the summertime,
When all the world is green?
Do you get a head start,
Learn to love modern art,
Shapes and colors on every side?
Is that what you do?
So do I!

9. Miriam & Tess

Oh, what do you do in the summertime,
When all the world is green?
Do you play "patriot,"
Wear a three-cornered hat,
And take in historical sites?
Is that what you do?
So do I!


And the WINNER of the Bliss Complete 2008 Summertime Photo Contest is . . . (drumroll):

"Golden Grandpa,"
submitted by Ann, Kate, Truman, Nana & Papa!

Congratulations on a fantastic entry! You'll receive your prize package by mail,
and you can start exercising bragging rights NOW!

Mommy's Little Helper

Tess is such an active, helpful baby these days. She doesn't like to be left out of any of the fun!

Tess has been an enormous help with the laundry lately. She waits until the clean clothes are neatly folded before steamrolling right over all the piles--giving them that crisp, pressed finish that even Martha Stewart cannot achieve.

Tess has become quite handy with my rubber spatula. Do you know anyone else who can whip up a cake upside down? Yum. Pineapple Upside Down Cake sure sounds good right now!

Concerned that dad's pants are still a little damp from the dryer, Tess gives them the fresh-air drying treatment, Tasmanian Devil-style.

Knowing that two church callings can be quite a load, Tess graciously helped me out with a Primary project at the church this week. I have decided to delegate any "rolling" required of my callings to her.

"Don't worry, Mom! I won't let you forget your church keys!" How did I ever get along without her? Ok, Tess may not make errands easier, but she does make them more fun!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Water Bug Shnug

Tess finished swim lessons last week, so we decided it was time to take Dad to the pool and show off what she learned!

Tess is very comfortable in the water and has a natural affinity for KICKING, whether she's on her back or her belly. She was the smallest baby in the class, but often made the biggest splashes!

Ha, ha! You thought this was Tess, didn't you?
What kind of a mother do you think I am?
Doesn't it look a lot like her, though?

Don't worry, Reen, I did not test her innate newborn swimming capabilities by dropping her in the water to see how she'd fare. She did manage to get her face dunked a time or two, though, and she doesn't really seem to mind that too much.

This morning we took a short trip to the National Gallery of Art to see a remarkable exhibit of artifacts from the National Museum of Kabul, Afghanistan. It was thought that all of the artifacts in the museum were destroyed during bombing by the Taliban, but some were secretly rescued and hidden by museum staff. Some of the items date back to more than 2000 B.C., and they reflect a surprising mix of cultures that influenced the region. These are pics from the East Building of the Gallery.

Now, this is the kind of mobile
a baby dreams about!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

This Is So Stinkin' COOL!

I just got the exciting news that my little brother is now
to his sweetheart Miranda!

She is the cutest girl and they are just such a great match together! Plus her name fits into our family like a missing piece of the puzzle: Mir (as in "mirror"), Mer, Maur, and now, finally Mir (as in "mirage"--is she for real? She seems too good to be true!).

Congratulations, you guys! We are SO happy for you!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Shnuggy Shenanigans

Tess has been quite the little mischief maker lately. Between butt scooting, rolling (back to front and vice versa), and stretching r-e-a-l-l-y far, she can pretty much get where she wants to go these days.

I've had to create a berm of pillows around the bed while I work on the computer. Not that pillows would really stop her from hopping off, but they do at least slow her down long enough so I can jump up and save her if she's getting close.

We've also been able to rope her in using her new high chair. This is a nifty space-saving model that attaches to a kitchen chair. It's been really nice in my cozy kitchen, and it also converts to a booster seat. She's pretty comfy in it and has become a voracious and enthusiastic eater. She's working on learning to drink water from a sippy cup (what a big girl!).

I don't know what it is, but ever since we started feeding Tess strained baby spinach, she's developed a neck of Herculean strength. She has used this incredible strength to perfect a new trick we call "The Human Bridge." In this feat of strength, Tess starts out in butt scooting form, but then arches her back into a perfect bridge while balancing on her head.

In the past, I've compared some of her flexible moves to yoga positions, but Ry has informed me that this is technique specifically used by wrestlers to strengthen their necks.

I'm not sure what she's planning to do with a strongman neck, but it has me a little concerned. I do get a little worried that she might hurt herself, but I don't really know how to keep her from balancing on her head. Plus, she gets so much enjoyment out of it.

We are hoping to exploit this talent by developing a father-daughter act that we could take on tour around the country (and maybe Europe). We have Family Home Evenings reserved for strongman practice for the next several years.

The future father-daughter duo.

With all her new activity, I've found that it helps to get outside the house or else she starts to get a little stir crazy. She loves going places! This past week, we've been doing baby swim classes at the pool and does she ever love that!

We were going to go and take pictures at the pool today, but we realized that our annual passes to Mount Vernon expire this week. So, instead we spent the afternoon at Mt. Vernon.

It was pretty toasty out, but we sweated through it and still enjoyed ourselves. It's a beautiful place with incredible history and we enjoy strolling the grounds.

So, you can understand why we're going to sleep well tonight! Here's hoping that baby does too!

Thursday, July 10, 2008


It's time for another Bliss Complete PHOTO CONTEST!

We know that many of you love SUMMER, so pick up your camera, get your creative juices flowing, and let us know:

Oh, what do you do in the


Rules for the Bliss Complete Summertime Photo Contest are as follows:

1. Qualifying entries must include TWO parts:
a. A photo exhibiting the theme AND
b. An accompanying caption to the photo that completes the verse:
Oh, what do you do in the summertime,
When all the world is green?
Do you _________________
Is that what you do?
So do I!

2. Qualifying photos must be unpublished, meaning that they cannot have already appeared on a blog (we want NEW stuff!).

3. Multiple entries from the same person will be accepted. Use of Photoshop or other photo altering programs is permitted, but may affect the overall creativity of the entry.

4. All entries must be submitted to me by 12:00 midnight EST on July 31, 2008.

5. Entries will be judged using three criteria:
a. Demonstration of the theme, "Oh, what do you do in the summertime?";
b. Verse composition; and
c. Overall creativity of entry.

6. Qualifying entries will be posted on my blog. One winning entry will receive a fabulous Bliss Complete Prize Package!

So, come on! Are you game? Summer's waiting for you!

Monday, July 7, 2008

July 4th Part Deux

A few sweet pics that Wendy took on the 4th.

Who needs sparklers when you have Tess along?

Thanks for sending the photos, K&W!