Monday, December 06, 2010

The Nutcracker, Year 2

This is the 2nd year Lily and I have attended The Nutcracker Ballet at the Englert Theater. Last year my mom and niece, Kelsey, joined us. This year, Harrison joined us. Too bad the sword fight between the Nutcracker and the Mouse King didn't last the entire 2 hours otherwise he would of had fun. Randy was out of town so Harrison had to come along. :)

It's becoming a fun tradition for Lily and I. I painted her nails to match her new dress from her grandma Kim. Harrison and I also dressed up. She was all smiles throughout the entire ballet. We'll definitely be going again next year.

The Princess Pose

Lily likes to throw out the princess pose for pictures. And makes her dadddy pose like a princess too.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

26 weeks!!

This is definetely my 3rd pregnancy because this is the first prego picture I have 26 weeks. I reassure you lack in photos won't occur once this bambino/bambina enters our lives. Maybe not the millions I took of Lily but plenty, I'm sure.

I'm very, very, very thankful and lucky to have great pregnancies. With Harrison's pregnancy my worst complaint was due to sciatica which really wasn't that big of a deal. This time around my biggest complaint is heartburn, which again isn't much to complain about. It's not easy caring for 2 other kids being pregnant but I knew what I was getting into. I really don't have any crazy cravings either. If someone mentions Thai food I know to order it within a few days or else it will be the only food on my mind. But Thai food is delicious, pregnant or not.

So here is the belly in all it's glory 3 weeks ago...

Goodbye tonsils!

Harrison suffered through 4 strep throat infections in a very short time frame. His main symptoms were grumpiness and difficulty sleeping. After a hard night, we'd look at his throat and shake our heads. His tonsils would get huge and red. Finally, after 4 rounds of this he had his tonsils and adenoids removed. We definitely played up the surgery with talk of all the ice cream he would eat but I think we did that to make ourselves feel better. The first day he did eat 7 popsicles but it wasn't an easy recovery. Now, 2.5 weeks later he is 100% back to normal. And by normal I mean crazy, blue haired rocker...

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Coping with the booster seat

How does one cope with their child growing up? The pants that are too short, the shoes that squish the toes...these kinds of examples are difficult to accept but my new issue with growing up is the booster seat. How do moms and dads accept THIS change? To go from a 5 point harness (SUPER SAFE!) to a regular old seat belt????? It made me feel better to see the proud smile on Lily's face today when I picked her up from preschool and she rode in her big girl booster chair (with a NORMAL SEAT BELT) for the first time. She was SOOOOOOOO excited. But I still drove extremely slow because I'd look at her, my little girl, my first born, and she was wearing a NORMAL SEAT BELT. I would keep her in the 5 point harness until she was 65 pounds if I could BUT the stork visit in February means I need to readjust the car situation and make things a little easier. I figure if Lily can buckle herself that will be very helpful. Even though tonight as I was searching for the NORMAL SEAT BUCKLE I was totally squishing my belly trying to find it. But we'll get there.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

A mom's letter to Santa

Dear Santa,

My 3 year old son would like a fire gun to shoot the naughty poo-poo.

Good luck with that.

At least my 5 year old daughter has a simple request...a bicycle.

From a mom who doesn't know what a fire gun is.

Monday, November 15, 2010

To Harrison's future wife...

I'm sorry.

If Harrison continues his night and nap waking routine, than I am very sorry. This boy is a grouch. He makes Oscar (the grouch) look happy.

Proof: This morning when he came into our room around 5AM. Apparently upon climbing up into our bed there is a immediate shift in ownership. This boy thinks it's HIS bed. He grouched at me because I moved. He grouched at me because I breathed on him. He grouched at me because my blankets weren't on his feet. Oh wait, they were on his feet and that is completely inappropriate.

Harrison Grouch McGouch.

If we can make it through until 6:30 AM (when we allow him to get up) THE MOOD disappears with a little chocolate milk and a tv show. Until he wakes up from nap...

Thursday, November 11, 2010

One of my favs

I'm not sure I can communicate how much I love this but I'm going to try. I LOVE FEELING THE BABY KICKS, MOVEMENTS AND PUNCHES. I LOVE IT. I LOVE IT. I LOVE IT. I feel like it's my little secret that sometimes I share with others but sometimes I'm selfish and keep them all to myself. These little kicks help keep my attention during work meetings, especially during a recent all day training. Apparently my little one likes all day training or maybe she/he decided to rebel and party all day, whatever the reason I loved it.

If others are around, usually Randy and the kids, I'll share and put their hand over my tummy where the kicks/punches are happening. Lily was able to feel the baby kick the other day. I don't think she quite understood what it would feel like but she's more than happy to keep on trying to feel more.

For the past 2 days, the baby has increased the intensity of their kicks and punches. Now it's fairly significant and hard not to stop and notice. I can see them through my shirt (which is completely alien like but I still love it).

Since I'm fairly busy during the day the majority of the kicks will happen at night as I lay down in bed. I don't mind postponing sleep for a little bit while I relish in this fantastic and completely amazing thing happening inside my body. I love it.

Last night

after the kids were tucked in bed and sleeping soundly I started thinking about how fast they grow up. I'm an emotional mess lately so this really hit me hard. I had a good cry and started to climb into my bed alone (Randy is away with buddies on a fishing trip)but decided to crawl into Harrison's bed (he sleeps in a full bed next to Lily's twin bed in her room). As I was clearing the large amount of stuffed animals, extra blankets, books and pillows I woke him up. I asked if I could sleep next to him and he smiled the sweetest smile and nodded his head yes (in a very sleepy manner). Before I laid my head on the pillow he had his arm wrapped over my neck and cuddled right in.

It wasn't the most restful night of sleep but it was a filled with a warm little body that would snuggle up to me every once in a while. Plus, when Lily woke up she was quite happy I slept in their room.

It's this kind of memory I want to hold onto forever. I don't expect to retain it in my memory but in 15-20 years I will be happy I wrote about it.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Random pics from summer and fall 2010

Water balloons and umbrellas. First is a weapon, second is a defensive shield.

Lily's first day of preschool (again). This is her 2nd year at a Montessori Preschool (ages 3-6). Same teacher, same class but now she's the big girl around campus.

Big sister is dropping Harrison off at his daycare. His recent photo ops have been pure goofiness. Lily picked out her outfit all by herself, right down to the Princess Aerial necklace and mismatched princess earrings.

The leaf pile. Lily was DETERMINED to make a leaf pile like last year. The problem was, or so thought by myself and Randy, there wasn't enough leaves YET. This shows the drive in a 4 year old...she worked so hard to gather leaves from all over the yard and she did it. She made herself a big ole leaf pile and thoroughly enjoyed jumping in it. Her brother enjoyed her hard work AND enjoyed playing in the leaf pile as well. (can't find that stinkin' pic of Harrison but it's really cute!)

Lily joined soccer this fall. Harrison joined too but only lasted 15 minutes into the first practice. It didn't help he's under the age limit (I was "assistant coach" so he could play with Lily's team) and it really didn't help there was a park 100 steps away. With a firetruck climbing structure. Lily gave it a try but it wasn't quite her cup of tea. Ballet on the other But I just love the pink soccer socks over the cute little shin guards. Call me a sucker.

My cousin Mikey got married in October. Here are some shots from the wedding reception. We had ourselves a mighty fine time.

I had to include this one since I made Lily's dress. I'd feel guilty NOT mentioning I had a decent amount of help from a sewing class so there it is. In addition to my cutie patooties my sweetie pie niece, Kelsey, has joined the goofy clan.

Randy and I never attended the homecoming parade in all the years we attended college here BUT with kids it's mandatory. And fun.

Thursday, September 30, 2010


It's probably time to announce that we're expecting baby #3!! We are very excited about it but I kept putting off the announcement because I'm a crazy worry wart. I kept thinking I'd wait until after hearing the heartbeat (the best sound in the world!), then after the 13 week ultrasound (for abnormality check but really I got it to see the baby!!!) and now I've been postponing until after the 20 week ultrasound which is next week. But I can't contain it any longer!!! Plus the little kicks and growing belly are good reminders that everything is progressing as it should.

Lily and Harrison are VERY excited. Harrison loves my growing belly and Lily will describe in detail how she'll help with the baby. She said she'll help out with everything except for changing poopy diapers. Lily also added that she won't EVER change poopy diapers even when she has babies since her husband will do that. Smart girl.

Monday, June 28, 2010

A little this. A little that.

We've been back from England for sometime and were able to enjoy July and August in Iowa. Okay, okay, that sounds ridiculous. Who really enjoys the Midwest in the dead of summer? Despite the sticky heat we had a fabulous summer filled with parties, parades and da pool. We also managed to have another ER/hospital visit during our annual July trip to visit the grandparents. Yep, 2nd year in a row but this year was Lily's turn. Poor thing got a ton of mosquito bites on her ankle and somehow an infection set up shop and was only evicted following a 2 day hospital stay with serious antibiotics. She was AMAZING and through the IV, multiple lab draws, foot x-rays, removal of IV she did better than most adults. Lily also recounts her hospital stay as the time she got pretty spoiled. Our dear family visited and brought cuddly presents to make her smile and worked.

Harrison turned 3 last week. Since he was 3 before school started we planned to enroll him in Lily's Montessori Preschool but this was contingent on him potty training since they don't accept diapers. We tried a few times over the past few months, nothing serious, and he amused us with peeing a few times and even pooping in the potty once. We reluctantly gave up his spot at Montessori. A week before he turned 3 he was home from daycare with pink eye (we've had our fair share of ear infections and tonsillitis, heck we've even had hand, foot and mouth so WHY NOT pink eye?) and was watching Elmo's Potty Time video when he DECLARED OUT LOUD that he didn't want to wear diapers anymore. What did I do? I RAN and got him big boy underpants and never looked back. He tried to look back once or twice and even requested a diaper when he needed to do some serious business. I rejected his request all the while questioning if I was a really horrible mom or really smart. Apparently, I'm really smart. :)

Potty training Lily was very easy since I knew exactly what steps to take and how to position oneself, etc. Potty training a boy, when I'm not a boy, well that is rather difficult. There are so many positions one could use but which is really the best? Stand up...but he's not tall enough. Sitting...can lead to pee all over. Sitting pretty well but requires removal of big boy underpants and shorts. Stand on potty...not ideal. Clearly we've tried them all and he still likes to mix it up daily but whatever position he decides it's WORKING! And seamlessly I might add.

My blog goal is to produce some additional posts to wrap up our England trip and highlight my baby turning 3 so stay tuned (and if you've learned your lesson previously you'll check back in approximately 6 weeks). CIAO!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Tea Party!

Lily's first REAL tea party was a few days ago. It was complete with real tea cups, hot chocolate and biscuits (and aero bubbles which are delicious!). I surprised her with the first tea party when Harrison was napping (she napped earlier) and she LOVED it. She loved the tea party but I think she also loved the time alone with me. She requested another girl tea party but Randy and I talked her into letting Harrison join us. For some reason, this tea party turned into a very improper tea (imagine burping and toasting to a "Fantastic Pee Party") party but we had many laughs about how improper it was.:) Today's tea party will make our 4th consecutive tea party.

Toolin' around Ivinghoe, England

The village we "live" by is a small village called Ivinghoe. It has a few pubs, library, tea room, a great park and a gorgeous church. The last picture is of the post office. Pretty cool looking post office, I think.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

The Dairy Cottage

Currently we're staying at The Dairy in Town Farm in Ivinghoe in Bedforshire. Can you understand why it takes me a while to read a map? The cottage is a barn conversion in the middle of a farmyard. It's located at the foot of the Chiltern Hills and has sheep and chickens. Apparently there is a pick your own fruit and vegetable area that we plan to explore today. Since it's June there won't be too much ready but hopefully some strawberries at least. We're also going to buy some free range eggs from the farm chickens. Fun. :)

We didn't plan to stay in 3 different locations for our 3 weeks here but it's working out rather well. Since our current cottage is on a farm we can't walk to anything beyond the farm. The town of Ivinghoe is pretty close, about a 2 minute car ride but the path isn't ideal for 2 little ones and I envision carrying both of them while juggling an umbrella (been raining intermittently a lot this week). Since the forecast called for rain all day yesterday we dropped Randy off at work and played at an indoor playground. We went here last Sunday and the kids loved it then and loved it now. They had the usual huge play structure but also had a race car track, carousel, kid's kitchen, vet pretend center, lego area and outdoors they had arm paddle boats and big sandbox. Yesterday, the kids got their faces painted.

I'm assuming this was once the main house but now it's separated living quarters. Still gorgeous. I took this picture from the tennis court. Prior to playing tag with the kids and Lily scraping her knee and hand. Ouch!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

More Pics from London Trip


London street performers. These were CRAZY! They would be soooo still and once you put money in their cup they moved. The gray lady gave fortunes, another angel (not pictured) gave the kids fairy dust and the others just posed with the kids. We probably spent more money here than anywhere else in London but the kids loved it. :)

My favorite part of London is the Tower of London. We didn't go inside but ate lunch on the steps outside. Nice view for a picnic. :) Harrison had just woken up from his nap (which lasted the entire boat cruise tour, he would have loved that!) so that is why he has the confused look. :) At least he let Lily console him, which she was more than happy to do.

Monday, June 07, 2010

Our digs

The first place we stayed was in downtown Milton Keynes. We stayed in a "serviced apartment." It was definitely more geared toward young single adults and not so much for families with young kids as evidenced by open windows with no screens (we on the 5th floor!!) and glass tabletops. But it was a very clean and nice place to stay. The apartment was located in the Hub, which is the central part of town. We were surrounded by nice resturants, COFFEE!, a supermarket and water fountains. In case you can't guess which perk the kids loved...

The apartment had 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and all the necessary items to live in. Hotels seem silly after this place. It was even cheaper than a hotel!

Since we ARE in England we wanted to experience England so we moved to the countryside. Randy has to drive 30 minutes to work so we'll only be here for a week and move to a different cottage with a shorter drive for Randall. But it's lovely and I'm excited to spend our days here.

Here is a video of our cottage in the countryside.

Our amenties remain the same with 2 bedrooms, washer dryer, etc. but we are no longer surrounded by supermarkets, coffee :(, and resturants. Instead we have chickens, sheep and a trampoline. In case you can't guess which perk the kids loved...


On Saturday we took the train to London. It was about a 35 minute train ride. Both Lily and Harrison enjoyed initially before requesting to play iphone games. Oh kids.

Kids in a English phone booth and Lily in front of the London Eye (large ferris wheel).

A family picture with an uncooperative 2 year old boy. At least Big Ben is in the background.