Schmit Family
Welcome to , , , and virtual front porch. This web site is just that; a place to visit for family, friends, and anyone, who are too far away, to stop by in person. Pull up a chair and stay a while....

24 November 2006 3:51 pm


This year, we spent Thanksgiving at our house, which we haven't done since before Dylan was born. Geoff's parents arrived in time to enjoy a wonderful dinner with us, and they will stay for a few more days to spend time with all of us.

Leading up to Thanksgiving, there were several events that made me think about what we are fortunate for. However, the one in particular that struck me this year was participating in the food drive at Dylan's and Andrea's school.

The food drive was intended to help provide Thanksgiving dinner to those who otherwise would not celebrate the holiday. The organization to which the school was contributing food was providing turkeys, but none of the side dishes. And to me, Thanksgiving is about the side dishes; I would enjoy Thanksgiving just as much without the turkey. So, the request came to help provide families with the traditional food to accompany a turkey: stuffing, sweet potatoes, vegetables, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, and a few others. We went to the store and purchased food specifically for the food drive, since we had short notice before they desired to have the food. We bought enough of each of the items mentioned above for a meal that could serve at least ten people. Our grand total? Close to a round ten dollars.

Ten dollars. That really struck me. I began to think about how often I spend ten dollars when I go out to lunch. And how little I think about it when I do. I then thought about how much that ten dollars would mean to a family on Thanksgiving. Ten dollars.

While Dylan didn't get to join us for the shopping this year, he did help sort the food into two bags, one for Andrea to take to school and one for him to take. I hope that the conversations we had around helping others who are in need will stay with him. And I hope that I will continue to realize how much we have for which I am thankful.

Posted by geoff at 15:51 in /family

19 November 2006 9:48 pm

Months Six and Seven

Pictures are now posted for Andrea's Month Six and Month Seven. Yes, that's right. For Andrea's Month Seven. She turned seven months old today, and pictures are actually edited and available for your perusal. "Hmmmm... what's the catch?", you must be thinking. No catch. In fact, there are over a hundred photos for the past month, and thirty for the month before.

Month Six contains pictures around the house. Nothing special, just every day life at the Schmit's.

Month Seven contains lots and lots of pictures. Those new solid foods that I mentioned previously are smattered throughout the month. Before, during, and after first bites. We went to the Morton Arboretum so Geoff could get his fall shots of sugar maples for Sugar Maple Software. There are a few pictures of Dylan and friends during their production at the Fall Festival at school; Andrea was too little to perform this time. There are a handful of pictures on Halloween, including of Dylan going trick-or-treating. He has one more piece of candy left, which he gets to eat tomorrow evening. One of my favorite times of year is captured again -- the fall leaves. And, there are also quite a few of every day life at the Schmit's again. As Andrea is getting more and more mobile, her adventurous spirit is showing. Toward the end of the photos, you'll see where she's starting to figure out how to pull her self up onto steps and chairs.

Now, if I could just update the pictures I have in my wallet, on my cell phone, and on my laptop...

Posted by geoff at 21:48 in /family

15 November 2006 9:21 pm

The Banana Connection

We started Andrea on solid foods at six months old. In the past four weeks, we have introduced her to a new food every 3 or 4 days. Her food repertoire now consists of breastmilk, rice cereal, barley cereal, carrots, peas, sweet potatoes, green beans, squash, and bananas. As we did with Dylan, we attempt to capture each new taste with a photo. Andrea enjoys posing for pictures, so there are many smiles before she takes a bite. And, there are many smiles after she takes a bite.

Last night was the first time that I thought Andrea showed any reaction other than a smile to tasting a food. Previously, when we introduced peas, she seemed less interested than she had in carrots. She still smiled, but she ate less. Last night, we introduced Andrea to bananas in the Gerber Stage 1 form factor. After consuming about three quarters of the container, she started to cry and to look at me; Geoff was feeding her. He and I switched, and I fed Andrea the last few bites of banana before switching to cereal. She didn't quite finish her bananas, and actually spit the last few bites out.

Tonight, I made the banana connection. I was feeding Andrea bananas again, and she continued to make faces. Dylan was actually asking me why Andrea was shaking her head and making those faces. About halfway through the container, she refused to eat any more bananas. And, that's when it struck me. Andrea has never liked bananas. It was the one food that I had a strong aversion to while I was pregnant. We'll see whether she ever develops a taste for them. Or, perhaps she'll be like my good friend Sarah at work, who has never liked bananas.

This means Andrea is going to love chocolate...

Posted by geoff at 21:21 in /family/andrea

3 November 2006 3:54 pm

Summer 2006 Photos

It strikes me as odd writing about summer pictures in November. However, not as odd as a couple of conversations I had last weekend. The weather was beautiful on Sunday and we had plans to head out to rake leaves in the afternoon. In the morning, Geoff was busy putting the finishing touches on his entry for the Iron Coder 4 competition, and Andrea was sleeping, so Dylan and I headed out to find a rake for him. We visited three stores, with no luck. At one store, when I asked the clerk if they carried any, he checked. The answer he was given was that no, it was a seasonal product. When I looked at him quizically, he agreed that it was strange to have no kids rakes at the peak of leaf season here in Illinois. At the next store, the woman behind the service desk didn't seem to understand the concept of fall being a season for raking leaves. Her answer: "Spring is the season to buy rakes." You'll eventually get to peruse pictures from the fall, but perhaps not until they are in season.

The final post-editting tally is in: 157 new pictures! The latest pictures include those from mid-July through mid-September. They are in four batches:

  • Andrea's Month Five. The biggest even during this time was our visit to the Illinois Railway Museum to see Thomas the Tank Engine.
  • Flannigan Wedding. We went to Sayre, PA for the wedding of Clay and Mary. At the hotel, Andrea went swimming for the first time and had a blast. We have a few pictures from the wedding and reception also.
  • Grandma and Grandpa's. We visited with Cousin Tommy, his parents (Uncle Tom and Aunt Maryann) Grandma, Grandpa, and Uncle Dan. We all went to a Syracuse Skychiefs game that went into extra innings, and we saw the fireworks after the game. We also took a trip with Grandma to Lock 23 along the Erie Canal, which gets the most amount of boat traffic of any lock in the New York system. A few of the boats were on their way to Florida for the winter.
  • Oma and Opa's. We saw Dylan and Andrea's three great-grandparents on this trip and enjoyed time with them. Dylan (and Daddy) enjoyed an ice cream Sunday at Friendly's, which you just don't find west of Ohio. Oma and Opa set up great trips for us to a Dairy Farm and a Wildlife Rehabiliation Center. We also spent a morning at Chittenango Falls.
Posted by geoff at 15:54 in /family