Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Ten on Tuesday: Grandparents' Day

1. This past Friday, Brady had a special session of preschool that was just for Grandparents! This lucky boy got to take Mema, Pop, Grandma and Grandpa to school.

2. Mema, Pop, Lu and Brady before they left for school.
3. The school boy with Mema and Pop.

4. The rest of the pictures are courtesty of my Mom! The chalkboard in his classroom.

5. Grandma and Grandpa in front of his locker.

6. Grandma and Brady before the prayer.

7. Mema, Pop and B in front of his locker.
8. Grandma and Grandpa working on the art project together.
9. Pop and Brady working on a puzzle.

10. The grandparents helping Brady with a puzzle, minus Mema who is behind the camera :)
Brady and Lucy are so blessed to have these amazing Grandparents who are so involved in their lives. Thank you to all of you for all you do. We are so lucky. Love you all and thank you for making Brady's day.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Be the Match

On Thursday, Mike, Brady, Lucy and I will be walking in the Light the Night walk to benefit the Leukemia& Lymphoma Society. It should be a beautiful event and we are looking forward to walking with a team called "Ally's Army". Ally, an almost 8 year old, was diagnosed with a type of Leukemia in May. You can read her story here. If you would like to make a donation to Ally's Army, click here

A few weeks ago I was peeking in on a favorite blog of mine and there was a post about The National Marrow Registry. As I read further I knew this was something I wanted to do.

I went to the website, poured over the information and signed upto be a potential bone marrow donor. A few days later a kit arrived in the mail and I followed the simple steps and sent my "sample" off and in a matter of weeks, I will be registered as a potential bone marrow donor to a person who is battling leukemia or another life-threatening disease.

In the meantime, I emailed Katherine, the writer of that favorite blog I mentioned above to thank her for pointing me in the direction of The National Marrow Registry. Katherine and I have now shared several emails and I am happy to have a new "blogging" friend.

So, might you consider signing up? Maybe you could Be the Match for someone in need? I can't emphasize enough how SIMPLE this process was. Below are some pictures to see how easy it really is. The online process takes about 10 minutes and the sample collection takes about 3 minutes, seriously. SO EASY!

Be the Match! And just like Katherine asked, if you do decide to sign up, send me an email jmczollars@gmail.com I would love to say thank you.

Here is the envelope that arrived.
This is what the kit looks like.
You take 4 cotton swabs and rub them on the inside of your cheeks - top right, bottom right, top left, bottom left. Then you put them into that little foam piece in the "folder" and send it off! Just like that!

Thank you for reading. I hope the sun is shining in your corner of the world. Wherever you may be.

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Pittsburgh of course is known for being the City of Champions, for decades the Pirates, Penguins and Steelers all have had their glory days as World Champions. I was lucky enough to attend Pirates, Penguins and Steelers games every year growing up thanks to my Dad who would take my sister and I any chance he got. We never though, go to experience Pittsburgh's Forbes Field, home to the Pirates from 1909-1970.

I grew up seeing the picture at the top of this post in many of my McCarthy relatives homes (we now have one hanging in our home). For in this famous picture that graced the cover of Life Magazine is my Uncle Jack, standing a top the Cathedral of Learning on the campus of The Universit of Pittsburgh. He is the back of the picture with his right arm in a fist in the air, holding the radio in his left hand. It was at this moment that Bill Mazeroski hit the game winning walk off homerun to WIN the 1960 World Series.

When Forbes Field was demolished, a few "parts" of the ballpark were preserved, including part of the outfield wall and the flagpole (that was "in play" for you baseball fans). Also, homeplate is preserved under glass in one of the University of Pittsburgh's academic buildings, in the same exact place it was in Forbes Field.

Since Brady was a little one, I have taken him to the "wall" to snap a picture of him next to the "457 ft" marker. This year Lucy tagged along too of course. I know that Mike, my Dad and my father-in-law love these pictures. Even gives this somewhat of a girly girl goosebumps thinking about the greats that stood once played in the outfield of what was an incredible ballpark.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

What's a Mama suppossed to do?

When this happens.....
Except grab the camera, snap away, laugh and watch the magical delight of joy in her baby girl's sparkling blue eyes. Picked this picture below to document her 4, count 'em, 4 teeth coming in all at once!

Mema and Pop arrived in the middle of this "mess". She was pretty proud to show Mema and Pop what she did!
Lesson learned here? Don't leave a bowl of sweet potatoes on the edge of the table within reach of little one while you fetch her a cup of water....unless you want to see her really have the time of her life. These are priceless moments. Was the moment worth the messy clean up?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Ten on Tuesday: The Catch Up Edition

1. Does anyone have a caption for this photograph? It cracks me up every time I look at it. 2. Labor Day weekend was a busy one for us. Two of Brady's three best buddies that he has been playing with since he was 9 months old have moved away. EJ moved to Illinois in May but he was back for Labor Day weekend and Hannah moved this past Thursday to Washington D.C. We were able to play with them one last time at our house. They just had a little bit of fun :) Oh how we miss you both. Hannah, we will look forward to running around the DC/Annapolis/Baltimore region though in a few months. Watch out Metro, here we come!

3. This little one went and turned 9 months old. Who let her do that?

5. My parents and sister were here for Labor Day weekend and I just now went through the pictures. As always, we loved having them here, Brady especially. He counts the "sleeps" 'til MeMa and Pop come and then asks them "why are you only staying for 3 days, how 'bout you stay for 8 days" Thank you to my Mom, Dad and Laura for being so easygoing and laid back about the weekend, it turned out to be kind of busy and they were all so helpful. My sister even survived a birthday party at Chuck E Cheese because Mike and I had a wedding to go to so we couldn't take Brady. Laura took him on behalf of us and as I understand it, they played a lot of Skee Ball!

6. Brady survived his 3rd day of preschool today. He was very proud to show me that he earned a stamp for good behavior. We'll look forward to day 4 and hope that the "goodbyes" continue to improve! Today his letter of the day was "R" and he told Ms. Kim that "R is in his name B-R-A-D-Y"
7. The weather has been absolutely incredible here in Dayton for the past, oh 10 days, or so. I absolutely love this time of year in this part of the country.
8. I am walking in the Light the Night walk on October 1st. The Light the Night walk supports the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Would you consider making a donation? Click here.
9. Mike and I are road tripping to our happiest place on earth, State College, this weekend. Will you be there? Let us know! GO STATE!
10. More pictures to come of an outing I had just with Brady on Saturday and our adventure picking berries yesterday. Happy Tuesday, friends.

Friday, September 11, 2009


If you've been reading this little blog of mine for awhile you might remember this post.
And tonight, we returned to that same sunflower field and took it all in. The beauty. The quiet. The sound of the crickets. The sunset. The thousands and thousands of sunflowers surrounding us in simple elegance. A undescribable gift from God.

Brady cried when we left, he just loved being there. I think that means we have to go back. Twist my arm....Mike, I think we need to plan all of our trips back to Dayton around the blooming of this field. I'm serious. I have about 90 other pictures to share but this will have to do for now. It's time for sleep, I'll be dreaming of sunflowers and my precious little family.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The first, first day of school

Now that Brady is 3 1/2 there aren't many "firsts" that occur anymore. But yesterday was a big first in my first born's life, his first day of school.

His first day only lasted for one hour because, go figure, there was a 2 hour delay because of FOG. We were so disappointed that this happened of course on his very first day. Normally preschool would be cancelled on a 2 hour delay day but since it was the very first day the teacher had them come in for one hour.

In that hour, they did their opening rug time where they find their letter of the day, Brady's was the letter "E" yesterday, they say the Pledge of Allegiance and they say a prayer. Then they did stations, they could chose from coloring, playdough, manipulatives or kitchen. Brady did some playdough time and manipulative time for that's where the blocks and trucks were! Then the parents did a craft with the children and then just like that, our hour was up!
Tomorrow will be the true test for my little Brady. Tomorrow I do not get to stay with him like I did yesterday. Tomorrow we will say our goodbyes in the "hello, goodbye square" and he will be a big boy and walk into the amazing world that is school.

You're gonna love it Brady Bear and I'm going to miss you while you are gone. Listen to Ms. Kim and Ms. Theresa and be a good friend. And if you miss me while you're there know that you can always go look at our picture hanging on the apple tree.
I love you sweet boy, to the moon and back.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

In case you were wondering


was the surprise that The Pacifier Fairy left Brady. The picture above was taken at 7:09am, we bounced until about 9pm that night!

And below is just a glimpse at the fun that was had over the weekend. I'm sure there will be many more big grins captured on this bounce house over the next few years.

Do you see Lucy? She's really into the bounce house too.

More pictures to come from the weekend and Brady's first day of school!

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