Bluetooth Car Audio

This is my new favorite toy. I bought the following:

Here is why I like it.
#1. It connects into my car’s Aux input. And it connects into my lighter outlet for power (no need to recharge batteries all the time).
#2. It works great with my iPhone. It autoconnects if when I turn on my car I’m on a call or playing music, it automatically switches over.
#3. It doesn’t automatically connect to my phone and turn on my music like some of the other devices do. Some people see this as a feature. I do not, because sometimes I listen to my radio, and if I wasn’t paying attention, I might have the radio on, and then the bluetooth podcasts would be playing in the background and I would lose my position.
#4. (this is the worst piece) People can hear the road noise when I use the handsfree. But also note that I have a Corolla and it is loud. I wish that I had my old Camry that was pretty quiet and much smoother.
#5. There is a button that I can push to connect. If I push this button and someone is calling, it will answer the phone. If I push the button and there is no phone activity, it automatically starts the from the last place where I was listening to music or a podcast.

Overall, I couldn’t have wished for anything more. It is very easy to use and after the installation (which was easy), I haven’t had to do anything else.

Foscam IP Cams

We recently installed some IP Cams in our house in order to watch over our kids. After the initial installation (which was a little brutal), these have been excellent. On the 2nd camera, the installation was pretty easy. I think that the key to using Foscam cameras is to always do the firmware upgrade.

Here are the exact models that we installed:

Here are the values for me:
#1. 2 way audio
#2. There is a $5 iPhone app that is a little flaky, but is fantastic in our home. It allows us to watch the kids as long as we have WiFi
#3. You can choose to keep the video stream only inside your router’s access or to allow web access.
#4. There is an option to record the video.
#5. Many ways to connect: webpage, iphone, ip address.
#6. Uses WiFi. For our house, the RF signal ones just don’t cut it. We have plaster walls and we just struggled to get something to work.

Cardinals vs Cubs

Andy, Jonathan and I took my dad to a Cardinals Vs. Cubs game last weekend as his Father’s day present.  We drove to Busch stadium for the day.  It was 95 degrees out, Jonathan and I immediately started sweating after exiting the air conditioned car.  Here is the little guy sweating…

We made it through 6 innings before getting a little too hot.  It was a fun day to go to the park, and it was fun to see Jonathan realize that the baseball players were really right there instead of on the TV.  We also ran into Daffy Duck at the park.  Jonathan was a little intimidated at first.

Daddy Is a Super Hero!

Shortly before naptime today Jonathan and I got on the subject of babies. I can’t remember even how we got on the subject or what was said, but it ended up with me pulling out a box of old pictures to look for pictures of Brian and me as babies.

I never did find a baby picture of Brian, but as I was pulling out pictures, one in particular caught Jonathan’s attention. His eyes grew wide and he said with a gasp of excitement: “Daddy is a super hero!”

Jonathan was just so excited– he kept telling me that his daddy is a super hero! And he insisted that I put the picture up in his room where he could see it as he fell asleep. So… if he tells you his daddy is a super hero, now you know the back story! 🙂

Cubs VS Reds

On Friday. JHK and I went to a Cubs game at Wrigley Field.  We picked up the EL in Evanston and took it to Wrigley.  We only made it to the 7th inning stretch.  The temperature got up above 40 somewhere, but I don’t know that it made it to much over 40.  By the 6th inning JHK was shivering relatively well, but insisted that he wasn’t cold.  On the way back we made friends with the conductor, he even made the horn go peep peep.  The next day, there were two highlights, he went to a game and the train went peep peep.

The Squirrels in the Yard

On Saturday, we were looking out the window when Jonathan noticed the squirrels in the yard getting really close to his tricycle and he said how they were going to get his tricycle.  So I let him run out and get it and put it in the garage.  When he got back in, I asked him where all of the squirrels went.  He said, “The squirrels all went back to their mommies because a Jonathan Monster was outside and scared them.”  I assured him that his assessment was 100% accurate.  


A trip with a birthday, a wedding, Mother’s day, and a birthday

So, call us crazy, as many other people have.  We took Jonathan and Grace on a 16 hour drive 2 weekends ago.  That’s right.  16 hours out on Thursday, a birthday on Friday, a wedding on Saturday, a birthday on Sunday and we celebrated Mother’s day with a 16 hour car ride back to the homestead.

There was not as much crying as one might expect on such a long trip.  We put a DVD player in the minivan which occupied a lot of Jonathan’s time.  And Grace was good enough to sleep a lot of the trip or to play with many many different toys that we kept giving her throughout the trip.

We had a great time in Bethlehem as always spending time with Amanda’s family.  It was good to spend time, but the time was really short.  The wedding was very nice, but Grace fell asleep in my arms during the wedding and Uncle Tom spent the wedding reading books to Jonathan. Jonathan loved all of the bubbles as bride and groom exited the church.  And he made it through many many pictures before finally falling apart.  After a decent nap, we went back to Amanda’s brother’s house to finish the festivities.

I know this is off subject nevertheless I just wanted to ask.

Easter 2011

We went to Springfield for the weekend.  Spent time with nana and papa, andy and ferfer, gigi and dadadaddy, grandma and grandpa on Saturday.

Nana and papa hid eggs and match box cars all around their house.  At first Jonathan didn’t really understand what was going on, and why nana and papa would have misplaced all of this stuff, but then he started to find some on his own.  And then he found an egg with two jelly bellys in it.  They scattered as he opened the egg.  He picked them up and plunked them in his mouth quicker than I could figure out what they were.  We all laughed after we figured out what had happened.  After that point, Jonathan was very excited at each egg he found! 

He also loved the match box cars.  He lined all the cars up and counted them, we all applauded his counting abilities.

For Easter, nana bought Jonathan and Grace some bunny ears.  And fortunately, Uncle Andy defended Jonathan’s honor.  Jonathan did not have to wear the bunny ears, that day!

It was good to see the family and spend some time over Easter.

Nana and Papa visit

Today, nana and papa (my parents) left to return home after a 4 day visit.  Tonight, I tucked Jonathan in for the night and he immediately went to his list of individuals who might free him…. “Nana”…. “Papa”…. “Nana”…. “Nana”….. “Mama”…. “Nana”….. hoping that someone would give in.

Everyone had a great time.  The women all spent some time at Jo Ann Fabrics.  Amanda and I had a birthday dinner for Amanda.  Jonathan spent time walking Riley around the house.  Many cookies were made.  Dog N Suds was ransacked.  5 little monkeys Jumped on the bed.  And Grace spoke her mind and called for Da-Da!