Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Swim Lessons 2011

Grace started swim lessons on Monday. Can't your tell? She looks "pumped"!

Once she got in the water she was ecstatic!

I would share more pictures but unfortunately I am in most of them. Not pretty!!
(All those women who say they lose the baby weight because they are chasing their kids around all day are lying. L-Y-I-N-G!) 

Grace is super excited to go back for her second lesson this afternoon. I, on the other hand, am dreading it! The water is luke warm at best. I can already feel the air leaving my lungs as I imagine that heart-stopping step when you finally plunge your entire body into the water. Last time, I couldn't tell if Grace was shaking from sheer excitement or the temperature of the water. Fingers crossed they've cranked up the pool heater today!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Nine Months and Counting

Charlotte had her 9 month well baby check-up today. Repeat. NINE MONTHS!
How is she closer to being one than zero? 
It sounds cliche but it is so darn true.
I feel like she was born yesterday.

Clearly her stats indicate otherwise (or I'd be in a world of hurt!):
18.12 pounds ~ 28 inches ~ 46 centimeters
66% ~ 48% ~ 94%

The doctor commented that she is heavier than she is tall...
(An unnecessary comment if you ask me but one I can relate to all to well.)

because she is perfect in every sense of the word!
Active. Happy. Bubbly. Chatty.
Truly a happy baby.

The only bad news? That runny nose she's had for the past - oh I don't know - MONTH was due to an ear infection. AN EAR INFECTION!

My thoughts exactly Charlotte!
Poor wittle baby! You'd have never known anything was amiss with all those smiles.
But have no fear, antibiotics are here!
I bet once we get the equilibrium back to normal in that ear of yours you are going to start doing wind sprints in the living room. 
Nothing could make me happier!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Busy Days Make for Dull Blogging

The last few days have been hectic. First, there was a drive to Boise. Only five hours but with two small children in tow it can be quite daunting. Then, there were Charlotte's nine month pictures - even though she was a day shy of 9 nine months. And finally, there was the daunting drive home. Yes folks I did 10 hours of driving with two little kids in three days.

Actually, both drives went well. Once I got to Boise, the kids got out and played with Grandma while I got unpacked and organized for bedtime. Then it was off to get Grace's haircut! Never a dull moment!

Haircut accomplished it was time to eat dinner. 

The weather was amazing and my mom was totally prepared to take advantage of it by having a delicious meal outside!

Charlotte busied herself by face planting at least twice. She just won't sit still - trying to keep up with her big sister I presume - and she just kept slipping and falling. In her last fall, she scratched up her nose pretty good. Of course she did! She had a photo shoot the next morning. Why wouldn't we show up for professional photos without some sort of bruise or blemish?

Charlotte pictured here BEFORE her face plant

I must say that the bruises are proving worthwhile. Just moments after her second big crash she took four unassisted steps in a row!! She took her first steps at eight months old!

Grace got a new Barbie tricycle from Grandma and Grandpa. She hasn't quite figured out the pedals so Uncle JABB decided to demonstrate.

The next morning it was off to the studio for Charlotte's photos. Professional photos are always quite daunting. There is the hair, makeup and additional poundage to think about...and that's just me!! Imagine that multiplied by three because I not only have to worry about myself but two more girls!! They don't even know about hair and makeup yet!! Imagine what this process will be like 10 years from now?!?!?!

Charlotte was nothing but uncoperative. If we wanted her to sit, she would crawl. If we wanted her to smile, she would stare blankly at the camera. She was on a mission to give us nothing to work with.
We took pictures of her for over an hour and finally gave up. Luckily, this particular photographer can usually make something out of nothing so I hoped for the best.

The moment I got Charlotte down for a nap the photographer called. Uh oh.

While there were some good shots there weren't any great shots. The photographer wanted me to come back to the studio when Charlotte woke up from her nap! Two photo shoots in one day!

Grateful the photographer was willing to get us in as opposed to making us drive to Boise again or selling us crappy photos, I hauled Charlotte back to the studio for round two. This time, we couldn't get the little ham away from the camera. She was like, you want a smile? Bam! Here's a smile. One sans teeth? One with a jack-o-lantern grin*? Bam! You want baby innocence? Bam! Get a close up of these baby blues.

*Side note: Her teeth are crazy right now. She's got teeth up top but only on the left side and teeth on the bottom but only on the right side. A picture can only explain and of course I don't have one handy at the moment...

The photographer assured me we got several great ones! On my to do list this week? Figure out which ones to buy! Never an easy task!

The next morning we were up and at 'em because we had errands to run and after lunch it was time to get back in the car and hit the road. Grace was "helping" me pack by jumping on the bed and retrieving all her items from her suitcase and bringing them back out to play with. Charlotte was "helping" by taking a solid morning nap. I was pretty focused on my task and only stopped when I noticed the serene quiet.

All parents know what quiet usually means in a house lived in by a toddler...TROUBLE! After calling Grace's name a few times and getting no answer I finally found her in the bathroom. Much to my dismay she had used the toilet - not the potty - all by herself! (An all time low even for me. I am officially one of those potty-talking-parents. Oy!)

Monday, June 20, 2011

How to Land Your Kid in Therapy - The Atlantic

Ok Charlotte. I've just got the green light to let you stick the rocks in your mouth and not come tearing across the playground to give you the Heimlich. You've been warned.

How to Land Your Kid in Therapy - The Atlantic

Leaves and Cake

Grace's little friend turned two today so we joined in for some birthday festivities.  

Lucky for the birthday girl's mom, the weather was beautiful and we could all play outside. 

There were slides and swings,

(perhaps the next Rory McIlroy???)

and tractors galore!

Everything was going great until Charlotte realized that she and Grace were wearing matching outfits.

Yikes! Not happy about that are we?!

Charlotte clearly did not read my memo or my last blog entry as she managed to find every rock, blade of grass and leaf in a 20 mile radius and insert them into her mouth. There was a brief choking fiasco where I flipped her on her stomach, pounded on her back and waited for her to gag up one of the aforementioned items. I tried to remain cool and calm - I did have about four mothers judging watching me as all this went down - but inside my heart had stopped beating.

Eventually, a leaf popped out of her mouth and it was time for cake!

Hmmm, I think this fork might hinder my cake-to-mouth speed. I know it's polite and all to use utensils, particularly at a party where my manners are on display. I know because my Mommy tells me ALL the time...

Oh screw it! I am just going to stuff it in my mouth. To hell with etiquette!
Now if only Mommy could handle her white wine similarly in these situations!

Dad's Day

Two things finally came together for us on Father's Day. First, the bike rack we ordered weeeeeeks ago finally arrived and second, we had some beautiful, warm weather. 

So on the last Sunday before harvest, we celebrated Dad by loading up the bikes, the bike trailer and the kids and heading to a bike path along the Columbia River where we enjoyed miles upon miles of river front views, meandering paths, playgrounds, trees and LOTS of shade! The girls did pretty well in the bike trailer, especially considering they'd already spent an hour in the car JUST getting to our biking destination! There were a few squeaks, squawks and 'No Baby Charlotte' coming from inside the trailer but all in all a success. We stopped once for a "monkey bars" break and then loaded everything back up in the car. After lunch and a brief stop at Costco, we headed home for nap time.

As it was Father's Day, I was sure that Court would take a break for a much-deserved nap. To my dismay, I found him outside planting the garden when I got off the phone wishing my own father a happy day! 
The garden planted in less than an hour - he IS a farmer after all - it was time to shower and prepare for dinner with Nana and Boppa. 

Luckily, Nana brought most of the fixin's which allowed us to provide the entertainment...

A great day for a great dad.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

No words. No gift. No meager thank you will ever be enough
to show our appreciation for all that you do for us.
But perhaps a slobbery hug and kiss will? 
Lucky for you, I am in ample supply of slobber these days!

Thank you for your endless love and sacrifice.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Kittens, Candy and White Wine! Oh My!

We went to a 5th birthday party recently and boy was it fun! I now see why parents like having their children born during the warm summer months. Warm weather + lots of kids = shove them outside with toys and you've got a swingin' party!! (literally!)

Charlotte quickly found the slide. Grace, not wanting to be outdone by her baby sister, was in hot pursuit.

They then discovered one of five kittens sprinkled throughout the party asleep under the play set. Not the smartest spot for a cat to doze off during a birthday party BUT he did end up being the most laid back cat I've ever seen. I swear there was something in his catnip.

Days after the party Grace is still talking about the kitties! I'm telling you these were the best darn kittens EVER! They let every kid (or just my kid) tug on them, 

carry them,

hold them,

and even flip them upside down! Like I said, they were amazing little kitties! (Not pictured - Grace Crodile-Hunter-style stalking down the kittens and grabbing them when the least expected it. I'm dead serious. The only thing she didn't do was yell out CRIKEY when one of the cats clawed it's way out of her arms, up her chest and then catapult off of her face.)

Charlotte required a little more hands-on attention during the party. She is at that tricky age where because she crawls she is at eye-view with every thing on the ground. She is all at that very tricky age where everything she see she puts in her mouth and tries to eat it. This is my least favorite stage of babyhood. VERY LEAST FAVORITE. All-nighter feedings, teething, when they push on your stomach about 30 seconds after you just gave birth (yeah no one tells you about the after-birth-stomach-pushing do they? Jerks. It's about a 100x worse than the actual delivery. Am I right?!) all rank much higher up on the scale for me. I hear about babies that go right from being blobs to walking - no crawling in the interim - and I seriously get jealous. Like give me Pippa Middleton's body jealous.

Crawling is cute at first - yay a milestone! - but that quickly evaporates, especially during the summer months when you are constantly outside fielding rocks and leaves out of your baby's mouth. I mean didn't she get the memo that I like to sit outside and drink white wine in the summer - uninterrupted of rock and leaf retrieving?! Oh well! Lucky for her she is stinkin' cute and happy (most of the time) to boot!

Great Grandma was a big help and gave me the use of two hands several times throughout the festivities!

I like how G.G. immediately gets her walking!
She knows what I'm talkin' about. Enough of this crawling nonsense. 

There was even a pinata filled with candy!
Apparently, I'm gonna have to REALLY start pulling it together when it comes to this birthday party planning business.
It seems to me that 3-10 years olds aren't as easily entertained with some boxed wine, a remote and a couch as I am. (They'll 30 years or so.)

As the party festivities moved inside for dinner, presents and cupcakes, we founds ourselves thoroughly entertained in the playroom. (Did I mention they served white wine at this party? A+ in my book!) Grace discovered 'dressing up' - a completely new concept for her because I have not introduced any dress-up items (other than tutus). Why? I have no idea. I have clearly missed the boat on this one because she seriously loved the princess dresses. Ee will definitely be hitting up Santa for some royal attire this holiday season.

I choose the word 'attire' carefully because check out Grace scamming on the "big girl shoes" like they were Louboutins!!

In fact, after this party, we got LOTS and LOTS of great ideas for what Grandma and Grandpa Santa can bring the girls! Joking! kinda ;)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


Grace turned 2.5 yesterday!

I am a big fan of half birthdays. 
(Probably because my own birthday falls so close to Christmas. By the time June or July rolls around I'm ready for another reason to celebrate!) 
Anyway, I had grand plans of making a special cake and busting out some candles but several days with no Daddy and Charlotte still teething away, the few down hours I get during nap time was used for just that - a nap!!
We did have a full day of finger painting, a quiet dinner at home (with Daddy -yay!) and she did get a couple of M&M's (without having to use the potty!)
Happy 2.5 Grace!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Morning Deflated

Today was...for lack of a better word...interesting. It started off great. Nobody up before dawn. Pancakes for all! (Even Charlotte!) And beautiful weather. A perfect day for a bike ride...or so I thought.

After cleaning up the kitchen, getting everybody dressed and slathered in sunscreen, changing everybody's diaper AGAIN, it was time to finally hit the road. Out on the trail, I reached our usual turn-around point...but my legs were feeling spry, the kids seemed content, I thought we should keep going. I mean after all that work getting out of the house, I figured I had better make our ride worth while. So we pushed on!

We rode to Starbucks and took a break. The weather was amazing so we sat outside. 

The girls were happy and laughing and playing and it was just one of the moments where you think it can't get any better. This tiny, simple moment makes every late night feeding, every stubborn pound gained during pregnancy ALL WORTH WHILE! 

All the thousands of "difficult" moments have come together to produce this one perfect... 

And just like that, it's over! Yep, it all came crashing down just that fast!

Juuuust as I had gotten everybody securely buckled into the bike trailer to head home a dude on a Harley pointed out a SERIOUSLY flat tire on my bike. (See! Nice moment completely ruined!!) You can imagine the spectacle we quickly became at a very crowded Starbucks.

Ok no problem. I'll just call my husband to come pick us up. Strike one. He's out of town.
Don't panic.
Ok. Ok. Still no problem. I'll just call my in-laws. They live 10 minutes away. Ohhh wait. They are out of town too. Strike two.
Panic is definitely starting to set in. I live in the middle of no where. It's not like I can call a cab. And with two kids?
Luckily, I brought the diaper bag (fully stocked), my purse AND my cell phone. I started in the A's and decided to call every and any person until someone answered to see if they could come pick us up.
Lucky for me (not so lucky for her), the first "A" answered and she was willing and able to come pick us up! She even had car seats! What luck right?! Woo hoo!
Not only did she have to come and give me and my kids a ride, she stepped away on her twin daughters' 5th birthday!! Believe me, I felt AWFUL for interrupting!! Boy do I owe her!!
So the take-away lesson here? Enjoy those 'little' moments - they are fleeting. And carry Fix-A-Flat on all rides. You can be sure I'll be stocking up!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Trip Down Memory Lane

It's been a long time since I was a sorority girl. Ten years in fact and this past weekend we had a reunion.
So many memories, thoughts, feelings and emotions came bubbling up as the weekend approached
but first, a trip down a memory lane.

The Kappa house at UW.

Here we all are back in 1997 in our formal attire.

And here we are being "funny!"

And then here are during our senior year.
You can see that we lost a few member from our pledge class over the course of four years. They were an intense four years - let me tell you!
 (There were a few more left at the end they just didn't make it to the picture.)

And again, us being funny.
(The girls who missed the picture were probably smart to not have this captured for all time.)

Fast forward ten years.
Here we are outside the Kappa house - most of us meeting again for the first time in 10 years.
Me - even longer as I studied abroad the last part of my senior year.

It's crazy how much life has happened - marriages, weddings, pregnancies, kids, jobs, moves - yet deep down we are still those girls in the pictures above.

After reacquainting, we toured the KKG house where we all lived, showered, ate, studied, watched TV, primped for parties, stumbled home from parties, got sick after parties and recovered from parties for FOUR LONG YEARS. 
It was crazy to see the inside of the house again. Even crazier to see the girls who are living there now. They seemed sooo young. Maybe that's because we are soooo old. 

After the tour, we headed to a nearby bar for drinks to catch-up. Then it was off to dinner - just us girls. It was a great evening full of "remember when....?"
The next day we had another get together - only this time husbands and kids were in tow. 
You couldn't have asked for better really was a great day to meet everyone's beautiful families! 

Hopefully, this will be the first of many more get togethers. 

Future Kappas at their first KKG event???
Only time will tell.

It definitely wouldn't be a bad way to go!

Only time will tell!