Friday, February 27, 2009

Arts & Crafts Gone Wrong

Glitter. Ultra fine glitter. Ultra fine glitter that I am sure will be making the carpet sparkly for weeks.

With a toddler in the house, you'd think she would have been involved in creating this mess, right? Yeah, that sounds good. Let's just say she is responsible and it's not at all the fault of her mother who did not screw the lid on. Oh well...

On a different note, Charlotte is feeling much better. The fever was completely gone on Tuesday. Now she just has a flemmmy cough (you wanted that description, didn't you?). I bought a warm vaporizer for her room and she didn't cough much at all through the night last night. She's in there now and I hear a few coughs, but hopefully they'll subside once the steam gets going. But as she is getting better, Jared and I both feel some sickness coming on. So far my symptoms are just lots of sinus pressure and achiness, but Jared has those along with a sore throat, and a slight runny nose and cough. We'll all be glad when this cold season is over and done with!

Monday, February 23, 2009

If Only Hugs and Kisses Could Heal

Last night as we were about to head out the door for our home Bible study, we noticed how hot Charlotte felt. I checked her temperature and it was at 104 degrees! Learning from my last phone call to the pediatrician where she made me feel like an idiot, I didn't call right away. I actually took Charlotte in for a well check last week so I was able to ask her doctor, "If she's running a fever, at what point do I need to call the office or take her to the ER?". She told me that fevers are the most common reason for phone calls and said that if after she has been given some Motrin or Tylenol and the fever goes down but she's still not acting normal, that is a sign to call. And if the fever gets to 105, a trip the ER would be necessary. So, armed with this little tidbit of information, I gave Charlotte the Motrin and waited. She seemed much better by bedtime and I thought we were in the clear. But she woke up very unhappy around 10:30 so I took her temp aggain and it had gone up to 104.2. It had been six hours since I first gave her the medicine so I gave her some more and put her back to bed. She slept pretty well, waking up a couple times but going back to sleep within a minute or two. This morning the fever was down to 101.6 and she seems like she's feeling better, other than a little cough. I made a huge pot of chicken noodle soup last week so I'll take some of that out of the freezer for her to have for lunch.

I wish that our hugs and kisses could heal. If that were the case she wouldn't know what it was like to be sick. In the meantime, we get lots of cuddles and snuggles in return. The only bright side to her being sick.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Still No Heat...

Well the repair man came and went and we still have no heat. He'll be back on Monday with a motor (luckily it's still under warranty, so we'll only have to pay for the labor). We all stayed plenty warm last night and today turned out to be a beautiful day so we were able to get a lot done around the house ("we" means "Jared" of course. Charlotte and I shopped:). The next two nights aren't supposed to be as cold as it was last night, but we'll most likely spend the evenings huddled in front of the fire. So cozy... :)

Friday, February 20, 2009

Do You Know...

...what it means when the heater makes a squealling noise, then after you turn it off and turn it back on again, it won't really come on but will make an irritating whirring noise? Then after you flip the breaker and try turning it on, you smell something burning in the back bedrooms?

We don't know what it means, but we're pretty sure that it's a sign that something isn't working quite right and figure it's best if the heater stays off tonight. No problem, you know, since it's only getting down into the 30s! Someone please tell Al Gore that his global warming plans have gone awry.

Anyway, Charlotte is sleeping soundly in the pack & play in our bedroom, with the ceramic heater we bought at that cute little shop called "Wal-Mart" in Clayton going full blast. Last weekend at the cabin I actually had to turn it down because it was getting the bedroom too warm so we should stay nice and toasty tonight.

Jared is building a fire in the fireplace to take the chill off the living room, and I think I'll make us each a cup of hot chocolate (thanks to a yummy mix my Aunt Darleen made!). We even have mini marshmallows to put in it :) Hello, calories!

We have someone coming out to look at it tomorrow morning. The guy on the phone thinks it is a broken motor, but said the motors aren't standard, and though they do have a few different models, it might be something that can't be fixed until Monday. So tomorrow while Jared waits for them to come by and work their magic (I'm being optimistic), he will be splitting some wood in case it can't be fixed until Monday, and Charlotte and I will be riding around in the warm van checking out the local yard sales :) There are some great bargains out there calling my name!

Dancing Queen

I'm sitting on the couch looking through some blogs, and I have some music playing in the background. And Charlotte was playing by herself with her toys, then all of a sudden got up and started "dancing". Her dancing consists of marching in place, spinning in circles (then falling over from getting dizzy), and bouncing (usually just the top half of her body, so she looks like she's saying "hello" to a room full of Japanese people). Seriously, it's about the cutest and funniest thing I've ever seen. I'll try to get it on video sometime to share with you. It was one of those moments that I hope I never forget.

Now I smell something not so sweet... Diaper duty calls...

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Last Week in Pictures

Here is a recap over the past week, in pictures... and some words.

Jared had to work late one day last week and he wasn't going to be able to make it home in time to see Charlotte and read to her before bedtime, so we went to meet him for dinner and afterwards went up to his office so he and Charlotte could have their story time.

We were headed up to Atlanta on Friday afternoon, so I stopped by the library beforehand to pick up some books on CD to listen to on the ride up there. (Wishful thinking. Riding with Charlotte in the van does not create the best environment for following a story line. It is, however, quite conducive for an environment in which one would like to pull their hair out.) We stopped by the children's library for a little bit for Charlotte to play while we waited on Jared to finish a few things up at work.

After climbing on the big alligator, Charlotte did some coloring...

Then I noticed that she was hoarding the crayons.

We stayed with Dusty & Arin on Friday night. We woke up on Saturday morning, earlier than any of us would have liked since we were up chatting until midnight, and Arin made us a delicious breakfast. Then for lunch, we went to our favorite little restaurant, Penang. Penang is the name of the island where Jared's parents lived while they were missionaries and where Jared proposed to me (awww!). They serve two of our favorite dishes there, roti canai and chicken satay. We've been able to recreate the satay pretty well, but have not been successful at all in making the roti. So whenever we go to Atlanta, a trip to Penang is essential. Here are Ella and Charlotte at the Penang, catching up on some gossip.

From there, Jared, Charlotte and I headed north toward Clayton, GA, where his parents own a cabin that his dad has been building over the past few years. We stopped at the Tallulah Overlook and saw the amazing view.

Charlotte and Jared enjoyed the quick break.

This was the cutest, most quaint little country bumpkin of a town. The gift shop sold RC Colas and Moonpies. It doesn't get more southern than that. The folks were real nice too. We made a friend. Kristina, I gave him your number ;)

We had to make a stop to get some essentials for the cabin that we had forgotten to bring with us, namely a ceramic heater. We stopped at a local shop that we also found some other things at that we thought would be useful. If you're ever in the Clayton area, you'll have to make time for a trip to a place called "Wal-Mart". Great stuff at reasonable prices with that small town charm.
[Sorry, I forgot to take a picture of the Wal-Mart]

We finally made it to the cabin and had to bundle up to go for a walk to the creek.

Then we walked to the creek.

Then it started to get dark so we headed inside and hunkered down for the cold night that would be ahead of us.

Sometimes it's just nice to get away from the hustle and bustle of the real world and enjoy a more primitive life. You know, the kind where you have a laptop but no access to the internet.

[Sidenote: That little black beauty on my lap is named Lucy. I am currently typing away on Lucy right now. Some people may find it odd to name your computer, but after the hassle that we went through to buy her, we thought she deserved a name (and a gender designation). It took countless trips to about five different stores, I don't know how many phone calls, tons of checking online and several headaches and letdowns before we finally found her and were able to purchase her. Since we don't have cable, we figured another computer would be helpful since we'd most likely be on the internet more and only had one computer.]

On Sunday morning we hiked down to the waterfall.

Here's a view of the cabin from the other side of the creek.

Charlotte did not quite understand the adventure of it all. "For real, Dad, what are we doing?"

After we packed everything up, went went to the Dillard House for lunch. The food was incredible and there was SO much of it. You don't order from a menu there, they just bring you a little bit of everything. Three types of meats, biscuits and rolls, and I'd say at least 8 vegetabls. We stuffed ourselves completely but still had more than half of the food left over. Here is the view from the Dillard House.

They also have a little farm at the Dillard House so we took Charlotte over to see the animals. She liked the goat.

And the sheep.

That's a bunch of bull.

We then went to some little antique shops near the Dillard House. Jared tolerated it wonderfully as I wanted to walk through the few we stopped in. Charlotte even made a friend in one of the shops.

Then we headed back to spend another evening in Atlanta. We went to the park with Cyrl, a friend of Dusty & Arin's and let the kids play on the playground. The kids were all in bed shortly after we got home and we had a good time listening to Cyrl tell stories of his family and travels. Some of his stories would make for a perfect Tyler Perry movie. On Monday morning, we said goodbye to everyone. Anson was so sweet and almost cried when we left. That just melts my heart! We met Jared's pastor from his church in Atlanta and his wife and son for breakfast and had a great time catching up with them.
[No picture for these events, but get a mental picture of Dusty doing an impersonation of a hyper-Calvinist (as in a Calvinist who has had too much sugar:). Maybe it's one of those "You had to be there" moments, but it was hilarious!]

After breakfast, we headed south for the 5 1/2 hour drive home. Well, it should have been 5 1/2 hours, but it turned into much longer than that. We were stuck on the interstate for about 45 minutes because of a bad accident that was about 1/4 mile ahead of us. And we made many more stops on the way down than we did on the way up to avoid having as fussy of a child in the back seat. She was a happy camper when we let her run around in the van while the van was parked on I-75!

And yesterday, Charlotte and I made a trip over to Gainesville to help with an event called "Let's Eat Cake!" It was a fundraiser put on by MasterPiece Weddings, the wedding and event planning firm I did my internship with. It was an all-you-can-eat cake buffet that benefitted St. Jude's Children Hospital. I'm not sure how much money was raised, but the turn-out was fantastic (they even ran out of tickets! What a great problem to have!) and the cakes were amazing. Kerry Vincent, one of the judges from the Food Network cake challenges (the really harsh one with the foreign accent that always wears the headband) was a judge and I got to shake her hand! I even rode in the elevator with her to show her where the judges were meeting. Yeah, I'm a big deal now... But even better than, I got to see Melissa, who coordinated the whole shin-dig, and Jamie, a friend from high school and my roommate from college! One of the most fun parts of the whole evening was the photo booth they had set up at the event. Charlotte and I had some pictures made.
Yes, I just took a picture of the pictures. We didn't get in till almost 10 last night and I'm pooped!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Charlotte's Growth Chart

Charlotte finally has a growth chart! I started it a couple weeks ago and it is finally finished and hanging in her room. It's super fancy. I'm talking a hot-glued hem and everything. Yeah, we roll high class around here. Charlotte wasn't a huge fan of standing still long enough for me to get an accurate measurement, so as best I can tell, she's about 2'3.75" . Such a big girl :)

At first, it seemed like she would stand still long enough for me to get a good measurement Then she high-tailed it into the closet
And shut us out
Not cooperating
Making sure I give her every inch she deserves
"But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be glory both now and forever! Amen." 2 Peter 3:18
In the perfect world, I would have ironed it before I hung it up. I guess Heaven is the perfect world, so I'm thinking all clothes there are wrinkle-free. Shoot, I bet you don't even have to do laundry in Heaven!

In other news, she has realized that she can open up the piano cover just enough to make some "joyful noise".

And the most recent pasttime in the Rollins home (a "recent pasttime"? Is that possible? In the Rollins home, yes it is.)- Dragging a clothes basket (with her in it, of course), across the floor as fast as possible. The squeals that ensue are just hilarious.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Gavin Rollins for City Council, Seat 1

Jared's brother, Gavin, is running for Keystone Heights City Council, Seat 1. I'm pretty sure that anyone who lives in Keystone and reads this blog already knows Gavin, but it doesn't hurt to spread the word, just in case. He has a democrat running against him so we're doing all we can to get his name out there. For more information, visit his website

Gavin has Charlotte's vote!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Little Joys

This may look like an ordinary photo of a cute little baby toddler playing in her exersaucer, but oh, it is so much more than that. As I was sitting on the couch with my back turned to her, she managed to climb in there all by herself. I'm still not sure how she managed it, but you can see that she doesn't care to be bothered with things like sitting in frontwards. After this picture was taken I raised the height of the exersaucer to try to prevent any more secret entrances into the toy. I'm scared she'll fall in head first and hurt herself. Charlotte, of course, did not appreciate my concern for her safety. She only sees that now she cannot climb into it on her own and is not amused by this change. Mean Mommy.

Part of yesterday's breakfast was chocolate chip muffins. Maybe we'll save those for when she's a little older and less of a messy eater. When does that happen, by the way?

Last night Jared tore off a few pieces of his (gourmet) grilled cheese to give to Charlotte. She didn't want to eat them, but she thought starting a collection of them would be nice so she began lining them up on the desk.

This picture is from about a week or so ago when we peeked in on her before we headed to bed. Notice the Cross tightly wrapped in her arms. A new lovey that she has is a blanket that Mandy & Aunt Diane gave her for her birthday. It's soft and cuddly and pink and gets carried around the house with her Cross. She's still a little under the weather with a stuffy nose and cough, so she's cuddlier than usual. Cuddlier? Sure, that's a word.

And this picture is from this past Sunday when we were working in the nursery. Though she's been too big for them for quite some time, Charlotte loves the infant seats. She was up late on Saturday night and was extra sleepy on Sunday morning, so she spent a few minutes just bouncing in the seat.

She has been enjoying her books more and more these days. She'll actually sit still for a few minutes (sometimes), so we've started reading to her more. Jared really enjoys the time of reading to her before bedtime. They read for a few minutes, then turn the lights out and he sings a few songs to her, then puts her in her crib. She loves it. A few days ago she was playing in her room, then came into the office where Jared was, and held up the book in her hands to him. Seriously, how sweet is that?! This picture was taken just a few minutes ago. She climbed up into the chair where her Daddy reads to her with the book he reads from each night.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Hello, Dark Ages

We are officially in the Dark Ages. We have been planning this transition for several months and have finally done it. We, Jared and Brittany Rollins, TV addicts and couch potatoes, have cancelled cable. **GASP!** We realized that we just spent too much time in front of the TV. It was a crutch to lean on when procrastinating getting things done. It had become almost necessary to have on if for nothing else than "background noise" during the day. Charlotte would get distracted from her play and become fixed on whatever was on the screen. We tried limiting the amount we watched, even saying we would go one day a week without it. But that didn't work so well. So we decided we needed to just get rid of it.

We're in Day Three of the Dark Ages. So far, we all seem to have kept our sanity and have not yet died of boredom. Yet... I'm not 100% convinced that the death-inducing boredom won't come. But so far, we're surviving. [Insert clip of Destiny's Child song "Survivor" here... "I'm a survivor, I'm not gonna give up..."]. We've done some organizing and cleaning, some preparations for the tax return, and lots of reading. Lots and lots of reading. We're going to be mensa geniuses before long with all the reading we're doing. (That may be a slight exaggeration... but only slightly).

But in full and honest disclosure, I must share that we are planning to have cable hooked up again in August. We have discussed the matter and decided that in seven months time, we will have been able to read all of the great American classics and solved many of the economic and social problems that plague our country. The fact that August is when the college football season revs up again is purely coincidental.

And 'lest you think we will be completely without media and entertainment of the technological form, some of our favorite shows, including The Office, Monk, and Psych, air full episodes online!