the eric update – day 1041: odin’s first haircut!



after over 1000 days, i almost can’t believe that it finally was time for odin to visit the barber for the very first time!

before we went, we told him what was going to happen, and he wasn’t too sure it was something he wanted to do but harry the barber has obviously cut more than a few "first haircuts" and before long he and odin were chatting about this and that and the other thing, which is exactly what you’d expect from an old school barber ( i know from personal experience that if you want the scoop on what’s happening in the area you only need to sit down in harry’s chair ).

you can click on each image for a brief description.

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the eric update – day 1035: not the kind of spring fever we were expecting.



gah. after emerging from winter and the cold and flu breeding ground that is preschool relatively unscathed, odin has suddenly and unexpectedly came down with a high fever ( 102+ F ) and a cough that thankfully passed quickly within 24 hours without causing too much trouble.

he’s such a trooper that we didn’t even realize that he had such a high fever until he stopped asking to go outside and started asking to lay down on the couch to watch his thomas the train dvd, which is not something we typically like to encourage, but hey, i’ll admit to enjoying a little mindless television when i’m sick too :-)

organic "inside baseball": how a maine blueberry farmer increased the supply of organic stonyfield yogurt.



we’re big fans of stonyfield farm yogurt and for reasons that odin won’t divulge it’s the only brand of yogurt that he’ll eat which is a happy coincidence since my employer, organic valley supplies stonyfield with the organic milk that makes their yogurt so yummy.

so, if you like supporting the organic valley mission feel free to run out and buy stonyfield yogurt :-). and while it’s sometimes been challenging to find their yogurt on the shelves in the past due to supply constraints, they recently announced a big increase in their organic product line and are buying nearly 50% more milk than in 2006. while i can’t reveal specific numbers, it’s 50% more than an already big number, which is great news for the organic valley farmers.

and why, you might ask, is stonyfield suddenly able to get so much milk? in large part, it’s because of a maine blueberry farmer who owns a solar-powered computer and an outhouse outfitted with a stained-glass window who won a lawsuit claiming that some regulations on organic milk were too lax which led to a rush of dairy farmers switching to organic last spring so they could complete the year long conversion before the more rigorous ‘‘harvey rule" takes effect in june. ( incidentally, getting a flood of milk in june isn’t necessarily the best timing since demand for milk seasonally slumps in the summer – yes, even organic consumers switch to sugary soda and whatnot in the summer ).

i suppose since this is "inside baseball" it’s worth noting that certain readers primarily on the east coast of the u.s. might see stonyfield milk on the shelves which is not made with organic valley milk but rather is produced and marketed by hp hood.

improvements to the bird feeder.



after not seeing much activity in two weeks on the bird feeder, we decided to take some advice and give the birds a place to perch close to the feeder so they can feel a little more secure about grabbing a snack. and we added some finch feeders on the bottom of the platform feeder.

while i wouldn’t say we have flocks of birds yet attaching the dead branches from an apple tree in the yard must have done the trick since we now have a regular handful of common grackles, some black-capped chickadees, a couple of blue jays, the occasional cardinal and a mourning dove.

the eric update – day 1033: um, yeah – we’re still here!



holy cow – spring has sprung and being busy with outdoor projects is about the only good reason i can come up with for not taking any pictures of odin for two weeks! sorry ’bout that :-)

odin has been helping me clean up the old ford, put in a gate on the fence, do a bit of general fence mending, spruce up his bird feeder, clean up the debris and detritus that collected in the yard over the winter and build a gigantic compost bin. phew!

oh, and if there are any flies to be swatted, odin’s at the ready with the swatter.

and yes, i do believe after one thousand and thirty three days odin’s getting close to needing a hair or two cut.

so long, old man winter?



old man winter stopped by and dropped 8 inches (20 cm ) of snow in what was hopefully his final appearance for the season. a local person claimed that spring snows around these parts come in "threes", but i’m going to bet against the folksy conventional wisdom and bet that spring has finally sprung.

luckily warmish weather made most of the snow quickly disappear so the tulips in our front yard didn’t have to endure too much of a beating.

maybe it’s due to all the walking i’ve been doing in the frigid temperatures, but this is the first year that i’ve almost come to understand how people from northern climes decide to become snowbirds.

the eric update – day 1020: happy easter!



phew, what a day! the easter bunny apparently was on a bit of a "humanities" kick this year and brought odin watercolors and a book of poetry. and just a smidge of candy which he didn’t seem to mind since he was much more preoccupied with the fact that a whole bunch of his friends were coming over for a whole lot of playing, a great dinner, a suprise easter egg hunt and some tremendously yummy cake.

happy easter from odin and us!

( wow! just look at how much he’s grown since last easter! )

the eric update – day 1016: pondering pediatric eyeglasses and the risks of injury.



while we’ve been marveling at how well odin has been adjusting to his new, stylish glasses, it’s hard not to occasionally wonder how safe the remarkably thin frames and lenses are as we watch him run and tumble and behave like the extremely active toddler he is.

apparently there’s very little research on the types of injuries sustained by toddlers, but one recent study reported that 21percent of all injuries occurred in children between the ages of 2 and 17 years and among children 2 through 9 years, the leading cause (55 percent ) of injury was falling. unsurprisingly, follow-up research indicated that a majority of the falling injuries occurred as a result of "sports and recreation activities".

it’s not like odin is playing in organized contact sports, but i wonder if we should be following the recommendation to have him wear "sport-specific eyewear" when we know he’s going to be out roughhousing? or maybe i’m just being a nervous ninny?

bonus points will be awarded for pointers to additional research or comments from actual pediatric optometrists :-)