Monday, September 29, 2008

The beach (again)

I won't bore you with more pictures of Amanda playing in sand :) We headed to Huntington Beach this time on Saturday. I did a little surfing myself, and when I got back Amanda climbed up on the surfboard. Mike snapped a few pics of my little mini-surfer!



We went to the beach early, so Amanda didn't get a nap. By the time we got in the car to leave (3pm or so), she was out like a light! Thus, when we stopped for lunch I didn't want to wake her up. The boys indulged me and we tailgated in the Quizno's parking lot :)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Video

Here's a video of Amanda "talking" (ie babbling!) to Sophie last night:


video

To the Beach and Beyond!

Like I said in my earlier post, we headed down to Carlsbad on Sunday and hung out at the beach for the afternoon. Here's Amanda playing in the sand:


And here's a few typical "California" shots of Mike & Nate heading out to surf. First just Mike, then both of them, then just Nate:




These next few are from last night as we were waiting for Mike to get home.
First, Amanda playing with my lunch bag, she uses it like a purse and carries things around in it.
"Talking" to Sophie:
And this last one is when she decided to put on my baseball cap. Yes, you can see her attitude in this one!

No news is good news?

Still haven't heard anything from AIG on what's going to happen to us. The new CEO had a townhall meeting last week in which we got the usual "I'm going to do a good job for you" speech. He promised more communication than the last CEO at least...

What makes this more frustrating is the speculation surrounding the entire situation. Nothing is known to pretty much anyone outside the "inner circle", and all I read are various news articles speculating that AIG is going down. And then I hear this person and that company are interested in buying portions of the company, but I wonder if any of that includes our division?

Anyway, I have some pictures from this weekend - we went to the beach in Carlsbad (where we went for Mother's Day last year). Amanda had a ball playing in the sand, and Mike got some reall good waves for surfing. I'll post those pictures probably tonight or tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Hanging in the balance...

You'd probably have to try really hard not hear at least some news of what's going on in the financial markets this week. It was impossible for me. Why you ask? Well, I work for a subsidiary of AIG. That's right, AIG. If you really do live in a bubble, let me summarize...

AIG is the largest insurance company in the world. It also owns (I think) over 200 subsidiaries that don't necessarily sell insurance. This mortgage crisis (e-mail me if you would like some detail on how that works... I understand a small portion of those problems) hit AIG really hard, and there was some speculation that they didn't have the reserves to cover all the guarantees/policies they had out there. This led to a reduction in credit rating, which led to a lot of those loans being called... and surprise, surprise they didn't have enough reserves to cover it all. Yesterday, the government finally agreed to loan AIG $85 billion until they can sell off their assets and shore up their reserves again.

Sell off it's assets. That most likely means us. The main part of our company does not deal in insurance, and to make matters more complicated, my division deals with even another form of business not related to insurance... so the question (from my perspective at least) today is... when and who is going to buy us, and how are they going to do it - will we be a part of the original company that was bought by AIG, or will they sell us off on our own, seperately? Or will they just simply disband us and that will be the end of that?

And that leads to whether or not I will have a job here in 6 months. And in all of this uncertainty, Mike and I had originally planned on remodeling the kitchen in the coming months. I think that will have to be put on hold until we know more about what's going to happen to me now. So much for a brand new kitchen by Christmastime!

Anyway, so that's the state of my life this week. Mike's doing fine - his work is stable as always, video games always have work. He's had to work late Monday, but not yesterday, and probably not today, so we're happy to have him home in the evenings :)

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Busy weekend

The weekend was busy (as usual). Saturday we had our second swimming class. Amanda didn't do as well this time. The teacher kept trying to get them to put their faces in the water, and Amanda didn't like it one bit. Then I attended a very fun baby shower for a friend from grade school while Mike watched Amanda. While I was getting ready, Amanda wanted to "help" me get ready, and ended up taking off with my makeup brush. I grabbed some pics before I took it back:





Sunday after Church we headed to my parents to celebrate my grandfather's birthday.



That's my grandparents behind the cake :)


Amanda sitting back and getting cake fed to her by Aunt Ilene:



Andrew playing with the basketball:



Amanda imitating him:




Mike worked on our benches in the backyard this weekend as well. They were getting very weather-worn, so he fixed them up - replaced any rotting wood and then sanded down and repainted one of them. He'll finish the other next weekend probably. Here they are side-by-side, you can see how bad they were getting... (I think if you click on this one it'll take you to the much larger version)


Thursday, September 11, 2008

General update

Sorry, haven't taken many pictures this week so it's just going to be a general update (in writing!  I know, profound.)

So Mike is back to working late nights.  I've been trying to find things to do with Amanda so she doesn't get bored hanging out with dear ole' mom every night.  I discovered on Monday that the local library has  a really neat little kids area with toys and LOTS of age-appropriate books.  Amanda is heavily into books lately (she wants us to read the same ones over and over and over and over...), so she had a blast!  I must have read her 20 books, and she sat there and did all the appropriate things... listened or opened little flaps, or felt the fuzzy bunnies... you get the picture.  We'll definitely be going back.

Wednesday we took a long stroller walk to get dinner at a local mexican place (El Tarasco) that serves some of the best fast mexican food you've ever tasted.  We took it home and ate it while watching the usual Dora the Explorer episodes on the DVR (lol!)

Tonight (Thursday) we drove up and met Mike for dinner at Coco's.  And tomorrow I think I'm going to take Amanda to play at the local playground.

We started swim "lessons" last Saturday through the local community college extension program.  It's 5 Saturdays, 1/2 hour sessions each week.  They don't allow picture taking though, so unfortunately I don't think we'll get any good pics of this (sorry!).  Last week we did the Hokey Pokey in the water.  Amanda had so much fun, she didn't want to get out!  She cried when it was time to leave.  We only got to go in the water for about 10 minutes because of all the registration and first day stuff, so I'm hoping when we get to stay in longer she'll be much happier.

We've been so busy lately, the kitchen remodel has kind of gone on pause.  We had a design done by Lowe's, but haven't had time to have another one done.  We're planning to try a local store "The Kitchen Store", and maybe one other place, and then hopefully we'll be ordering the cabinets by the end of September.  It takes about 6 weeks to get cabinets in and then we can hire a contractor.  I'm hoping I'll have a brand new kitchen by Christmas!

That's about all that's going on at the McReynold's household.  I hope everyone is having a good week!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Labor Day Fun!

Sunday we joined my parents up at Mt. Pinos, a campground in the mountains that they frequent every year. I posted some pics of Amanda last year at Memorial Day in the same place. Anyhoo... my sister was there with my nephew and Andrew & Amanda had a ton of fun playing together. Here they've discovered the motorcyle trailer my dad brings his motorcycles on, and climbed up to play.





Andrew LOVES Motorcycles (or "bites" in his vocabulary :) ), and he loves putting on the helmet. He won't even take it off to talk on the phone!!



Mike also learned how to ride a motorcycle while we were up there, but I don't have his permission yet to post those pics...

Monday Amanda and I headed to my parents' house for a bbq. Amanda played the piano:



And watched Andrew play the piano...



My mom found an old Barbie motorized jeep that one of her neighbors had thrown out, so she picked it up and my dad cleaned it up. It doesn't have a battery yet, but that didn't stop Amanda from playing with it.



Then she let Andrew on to try and drive it.



And when that didn't work, they resorted to pushing it on their own.



Then Aunt Ilene brought out the chalk to draw on the tennis court, which the kids had fun with.



(Notice Amanda drawing on her shoes. Yes, Aunt Ilene taught her how to draw on herself.)