Daddy’s Steps

When Daddy walks along the street
And hurries home to me,
He takes the quickest, longest steps
That ever I did see.
But when I go to walk with him,
He acts quite diff’rently,
And takes the slowest, shortest ones
To keep in step with me.

-Margaret Brown Elms

Our Newest Addition

Our household is slowly phasing out PCs and becoming a Mac only household. My primary computer is a Powerbook, Simeon uses a Macbook Pro, we have a G5 tower that we use as a server, neither of us can function without our iPhones, oh and we have a handful of iPods (a Shuffle, a Nano, and a 4th Generation 60GB). So to fully round out our collection we just bought a shiny new 24″ iMac. This was the final computer necessary to completely render our one remaining PC (our desktop computer) entirely useless. You can see that Simeon is a little excited about this.

Even Ana is happy about our “newest addition.” We have the screen saver set up to rotate through the (thousands of) pictures we have taken in the last year. She has fun watching pictures go by and shouting out, “Baby!” “Mama!” “Daddy!” or “Molly!” (all dogs are currently “Molly” at the moment) at the life-size monitor. That and she is very excited to occasionally walk by and wiggle the mouse or tap on the keyboard. You know, just like any future-geek would do.

While I am looking forward to having a computer that doesn’t crash every time I load more than one program at a time, I am also suffering from a little anxiety at losing my PC. I was really good on my PC. I knew tricks and shortcuts and how to use all the software. But it’s time this old dog learns some new tricks. Some more efficient and properly functioning tricks. In the mean time I am still trying to figure some things out. So bear with me while I muddle through learning all the shortcuts, keyboard differences, and anything else I haven’t come across yet. It’s a shiny, exciting, new world and I look forward to embracing all the Mac-y goodness I can get my hands on. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I am gonna go play with Photobooth, ’cause that is some good times!

Tired Little Monkey

This morning Ana and I were working through our morning routine: get up, have breakfast, get dressed, play a little, then read a couple books before putting her down for a nap. Well we had just finished eating and worked our way back upstairs to pick out her outfit for the day. I was in her room gathering her clothes and Ana wandered into the office. (We recently rearranged the office and the novelty of the new layout has yet to wear off for her.) A couple minutes later I went in to investigate what she was getting into that was delaying her return to her room. You can imagine my surprise when I walk into the office to find Ana laying down on the floor, cuddling her blankie and sucking on her binkie! Before she left her room she must have reached into the crib for her sleeping necessities then headed over to the office for a nice quiet place to curl up and sleep! Needless to say, we skipped right to reading a story and then the nap portion of the morning for my tired little monkey.

Little More Explanation

In all the excitement of the new site design (no, Lisa, you didn’t break it!) I forgot to mention a couple of the “new features” we added. For those of you who haven’t looked around much, I now have a Twitter widget in the upper right hand corner. It answers the question “What am I Doing?” That is, whenever I remember to updated it. You can also click on the actual “What am I Doing?” link which will take to you a list of all the recent things I have done. It gives a nice little time stamp so you can tell how current the post actually is. Pretty cool? I think so.

As for the new picture “header” on the top of my site, it is actually my most current ten or so pictures I have uploaded to my Flickr page. The last picture I uploaded will show up on the left. If you mouse over the pictures it will scroll along to allow you to see them all. If it doesn’t scroll, you are probably at the end so move your mouse to the opposite end and it should scroll away. This was my clever husband’s idea. He is just so sweet to build me fancy things. Oh and as always, if you want to see ALL my Flickr pictures you can still click on the Flickr badge over on the right hand side. It will take you to a separate web page with all my pictures that (generally) come from my iPhone. There I try to explain what is happening in the picture (if it isn’t obvious) and you can comment on the individual pictures. I love getting comments!

Just below the Twitter widget and my Flickr badge is a search box. If you are lazy like me, and don’t feel like going to Google and doing an advance search to find something specific I may have blogged about once upon a time, you can just type in whatever you are looking for and poof! it will appear. It’s pretty cool because it will show you all the entries that contain what you searched for, just click “read more” to get the full entry. I have wanted this for a looooong time, so I am really excited about it, even though its a pretty basic little tool. It’s the simple things that keep me happy.

What else? Oh yeah, all my links to sites I read are below that, but in a slightly different order. We have “Blogs I Read,” “People I know” (whose blogs I read, obviously) and “Photo Blogs.” Within the categories they are alphabetical. Gotta love the organization of that one. So sorry if your site took an alphabetical descent in order, but thems the rules, kids.

Then over on the left side of the site (I know, I am working backwards, sorry) we have the Categories. I had this section on the previous version of my site, but in a slightly different format. The little number in parentheses is how many entries are in each category. Basically a real quick way to see what is the most important to me when it comes to blogging, eh?

Finally, below the Categories section is the Archives. It goes all the way back to March 2004 when I created this site…which reminds me I have a blog-o-versary coming up! Cool! So you can go back to a specific time to browse through old entries.

That pretty much sums up the new site stuff. Little bit of old mixed in with the new. Just the way we like it. I hope you enjoy it as well. Happy reading!


We, over here at the Bateman household, have been getting a little antsy to update this site. For months now I would ask Simeon to fix or change something on my site and he would mumble something incoherent in response. Needless to say, it’s been awhile since we did, well, anything. So we are both very excited to launch the latest version of Simzgirl.

I have been playing with the new site for a couple days and I am already drunk with power. I have control over EVERYTHING. There are things I can do now that I wouldn’t have even imagined (or wanted to, for that matter) on my old site. While the majority of the changes you will see are mostly cosmetic, the changes for me make it easier to blog. When it’s easier to blog, I can update my site more frequently…at least this is the theory I am running with.

So come on in. Make yourself at home. Check things out. And please let me know if you have any questions, comments, or concerns. Thanks again for stopping by!

A Letter: Fourteen Months

Dear Ana,
Today you turn fourteen months old. Your little personality is emerging more and more each day. I am continually amazed by you. I love nothing more than setting you down and just sitting back to see what you are going to do next. I am so grateful for what a patient, thoughtful, little person you are becoming.

You have this adorable habit of singing or talking yourself to sleep. Every day I put you in your crib at nap time and you snuggle into your blankie and roll over on your side as I pull the door almost closed behind me. Occasionally you go straight to sleep; like the only thing keeping you awake was the fact that you were still standing upright. But more often than not you are quiet for a few minutes and then I hear a steady stream of words and sounds coming from your room. You are like a little old woman frantic to use all her coupons before they expire: you just wouldn’t want them to go to waste! I always peak in and check to see if you are playing in your crib rather than sleeping, because after that much noise I expect you to be wide awake. But no, you are all cuddled up sleeping away as peacefully as ever, just so relieved you were able to say those words. One. Last. Time.

Not only do you love to say words, but you love to read them as well. Books are easily your favorite thing at the moment, which is obvious by looking around our house. You can find piles of your books on my nightstand, on your Daddy’s bedside table, on the bookshelf in your room, in a basket in the living room, in a pinch you will even read the cookbooks in the dining room. In fact, the only place we don’t have books is in the diaper bag because God forbid we accidentally leave one behind somewhere and the Universe is thrown off balance.

A love of books is something your father and I can totally relate to. There is nothing we love more than curling up to read a good book. We both understand how important it is to have a comfy place to read, so we bought you your very own chair. Whenever we are in the living room you go straight to your chair, climb up (it’s still a little big for you to just be able to sit on), and settle in. You enjoy having a piece of furniture all your own that fits you so perfectly. I just love looking over to see you sitting in your chair, flipping through a book, and knowing there is no where else you would rather be.

A couple times in the last month a magical thing has happened at our house: it SNOWED! In fact one day it actually snowed enough we were able to go outside and “play” in it. (While it snowed a couple times last year, you were only a couple weeks old and I wasn’t about to take you out outside and put you in the snow.) But I wasn’t going to let another winter go by without my daughter getting out into the snow, so I bundled you up and took you out in the front yard. At first you just stood there, not sure what had happened that made the world turn white. Then you got brave enough and actually bent over and touched the snow with one tiny finger. Once you determined that it wasn’t going to hurt you, you plopped down and sat right in it. Next thing I knew you were brushing your hands across the snow. So I gathered some up in my hand and made you your very own snow ball. You were so excited you held onto that snow ball tightly in your hand until it melted.

The cold winter weather has forced us to get a little creative in how we spend our days. We have started taking little “field trips” once a week to places such as Gymboree class, the Children’s Museum, and Kindermusik class. I love watching you explore new places and see the excitement take over your face when we try something different. You always surprise me at how comfortable you are in foreign situation and with new people. You are so friendly and outgoing it warms my heart to watch you reach out and make a stranger smile.

Oh and something has to be said about what a girly-girl you are! You love, love, LOVE jewelry. You are always digging in your bag of toys to put on necklaces. Even ordinary things become “jewelry” in your eyes as you drape them over your neck. In fact, I now wear necklaces purely for the joy they bring to you. Oh and don’t even get me started on your love of shoes. You already climb into my shoes to “try them on.” And you love to play in my closet because all of Daddy’s shoes are right at your level to play with. The other day when you were in my closet you actually looked up and spotted all MY shoes. You turned at looked at me, pointed, and yelled “shooooes!” It was as if Christmas had come early. Baby girl, just know that I will do everything in my power to make sure that your face lights up like that as often as possible.

All my love,

Her Latest Skill

While Ana has been pretty quick to learn many of her abilities, there are some we have to work on a little more. Like teaching her to use a straw. We have tried on several occasions but she either bites on the straw or pulls it out of the cup to bend it and/or bite it into a twisted unworkable mess. Tonight Simeon, Ana, and I went to dinner at Burgerville and I suggested while we waited for our food, we should work on the straw some more.

We showed her how to suck with the straw. We made sucking noises to show her what to do with her mouth. But nothing worked.

Getting a little desperate that my daughter might never be able to understand how to use a straw, I handed her my Chocolate Hazelnut milkshake. The theory was 1) she could see the whipped cream through the cup and so I knew Ana would be motivated and 2) the milkshake was thick enough that some of the liquid remained in the straw and Ana could actually understand that a beverage is suppose to come out of it.

Sure enough, it worked like a charm! Ana put her mouth to the straw and we instantly saw the milkshake moving through it. You should have seen the excitement on Ana’s face when she tasted the delicious treat…but it was nothing compared to our faces at seeing Ana learn to use the straw!

Just to make sure it wasn’t a milkshake specific skill, we gave her some milk and even water and she sucked them all right up. Sure, she greatly preferred the milkshake, but it was a Burgerville Chocolate Hazelnut milkshake, who wouldn’t?!