Photobucket        Photobucket       Photobucket       Photobucket

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Is it spring?

I must say this winter has been a bit disappointing for someone who enjoys a couple good snows. But William is not complaining since he never ONCE had to shovel our driveway. :) We woke up today to the sunshine and birds chirping. We scrapped our library plans and headed out to the park in just a light jacket!

It was funny, I had been hyping up the park to get him to get dressed easier and we got in the car and turned left out of our subdivision. The park we normally go to is to the right. He screamed and pointed. Guess he knows his directions and where the regular park is. This was our first venture out to Hessel Park! We got there around 9 and had the whole park to ourselves until about 10. I don't think we left until close to 11.  What a great way to spend the morning!
his view from the swings
he kept saying "rocka, rocka"
he loved this little bridge
we spent much of that time just walking around
these seals squirt water in the summer - can't wait to cool off here!
another water feature - the tunnel

Happy Early Birthday Dr. Seuss

Last Saturday, we got a head start on celebrating Dr. Seuss' birthday, which is really this Friday, March 2. He's still a little young to understand, but gotta start sharing the love for some of my favorite authors. Target was hosting a read-aloud from 9-11, and while I didn't have huge hopes for the event, who really needs an excuse to go to Target? :)

I was actually surprised that they were ready for kiddos right at 9 and had a little display area where the kids could sit. Each kid got an apple juice, popcorn, and fruit snack from 2 ladies in red and white Cat in the Hat hats. Then the reading started. It took everything in me to not jump up and take the book Green Eggs and Ham from the lady who was reading. She would hold the book and read in her lap and then show the picture really fast.  She obviously never had really read books to young kiddos.  Luckily, Owen loves his books and sat really still for the whole book even though we were mostly just listening to the words.
After the story was finished, each kid got a little goody bag to take home.  It was a cute reusable bag that had a couple coloring sheets, some crayons, some stickers, a bookmark, and a couple coupons.  Owen was entertained for about 5 minutes with it. :)  
But he was more excited about the item we went to Target for.  In his Valentine's card from Grandma Hoerr, he got a Target giftcard.  He's been very interested in our bathroom routine lately and while he is in NO way ready for potty training (at least I don't think he is), we got him a potty so he can get used to it in his bathroom.  He loves to use it more for the stool function right now and says "TALL" when stands on it. 
If you're local and at all interested, we'll be doing another Dr. Seuss activity this Saturday, March 3 at Lincoln Square Mall.  It's free and from 10-1.  I can't find a good description for this year, but last year they wrote: " Read Across America is a community celebration of reading, with booths providing hands-on literacy activities; stories being read to children in both English and other languages; and characters from Seussical the Musical performing. The first 1000 children will get a free bookbag and children can select a free new book to take home after they complete the activities."

Maybe we'll see you there!


Friday, February 24, 2012

32 weeks!

Miss Ellison: is about the size of a jicama, or 3.75 pounds and 16.7 inches.  On a side note, do you like jicama?  I love it!  Just peeled with a little salt.  Mmm.  But they're not the easiest things to find.  Maybe someday when I have a garden.  Where was I?  Oh yes, Ellie is helping me gain about a pound a week now and she also has toenails, fingernails, and real hair (well, not if she's anything like her brother).
The appointment: Yesterday, we had our 32 week appointment with Kathy, who I haven't seen this whole pregnancy.  I remember liking her with Owen.  Not so much after yesterday.  Be warned, this section could be long.  Started off great.  Ellison is head down where she will hopefully stay, heartbeat was 156, and my stomach is measuring right at 32 weeks as it should be.  I had no major questions, except the one I bring up at every appointment.  "So, any idea if I'll be on the 4th floor or 10th floor?  No biggie, I'd just like to know."  I've asked this before, yes?  I vaguely remember posting about this question after every single appointment I've had. 

But today, Kathy very sternly pointed out that in my file it says that after having Owen and all the heart issues, I was to have a 3 month follow up with Dr. Mongwa, my cardiologist.  What?!  Why has no one ever told me this?  When I called for my follow up echo results, no one from cardiology ever told me to come back in 3 months.  Nor was anything mentioned at my 6 week post-baby check up.  But then Kathy proceeded to tell me that if I didn't have this follow up, they might not be able to ok me doing a water birth.  Let's just say at this point, I'm thankful they took my blood pressure already because it's sky rocketing.  She couldn't really tell me why no one had mentioned this.  She said to just call that day and get an appointment.

So I called cardiology and sounded like a fool because I don't really know what I need done.  A follow up echo?  Maybe.  And meeting with Dr. Mongwa who has no idea who I am and saw me for maybe 5 minutes after Owen was born.  Sure, they can get me into him in May.  *insert me almost crying*  After some begging and multiple phone calls later, I have an appointment with him on March 23.  It's only a consult, so who knows what he'll say or what kinds of tests he'll want to run and if they can even be done before Ellie decides to come.  Just pray with me that this will all get sorted out, and we can proceed with the plan of an drug free water birth, with NO iv stuck in my hand for 3 days, and my baby with me in my room and not on a different floor.

Owen did so great through this appointment.  I brought him with because I thought it'd be a short one.  Haha.  But he read his books, played with his cars, and checked out everything in the room.  His reward (and mine) was going through the Starbucks drive through on the way home and getting his first ever chocolate milk.  The boy was in heaven.  Thanks Melissa for the giftcard!
How I'm feeling: well, if you don't count how I was feeling after yesterday's appointment, pretty good!  Definitely getting harder to carry Owen up and down the stairs and I'm having a hard time getting a full breath.  Emotionally, I just can't figure out why I can't settle on some things for her nursery. I'm driving myself crazy! :)

Movement:  She's moving similarly to Owen.  I get jabs constantly on the right side, but I wouldn't say she's a super active mover.  After my morning coffee and when I chug some water or change positions lying down.  Maybe she'll be mellow like Owen?

Baby projects:  Owen's big boy furniture is finally on the way which means we can make some progress on their rooms!  I also ordered a wall stencil for El's room.  Don't worry, not the kind of stencil you first think of, just a super cool one for the wall behind her crib.  I also finished my first crocheted project, a little hat for one of her potential coming home outfits.  This is quite a feat for me since crochet and knit are quite different.  But there are so many cute flowers to make with crochet, so I thought, why not teach myself a new hobby?
Books I'm reading: Finally picking up some birth books and also re-reading some books on women in (church) leadership.  Much more about this in a different post. 
And Some Pictures:
This one makes me look good.  I must have been standing up really straight or sucking in or something:
And here's me not standing up straight.  So this is the more accurate picture of what I normally look like.  Because who has good posture at 32 weeks? :)  And notice my little helper snuck in to see what I was doing.

8 more weeks.  Ahhhh, gotta get moving on some things.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

keeping us busy

A few people have asked, don't worry. Even though I'm not checking in on Facebook throughout Lent (wow, it's harder than I thought) I'm still blogging. I know all you really care about it making sure I update you on how close to labor I am. :) More about her in a later post.

Let me preference this post. I don't want you to think I'm a super mom who does fun projects everyday.  I mean, I do LOVE to pull out some of my old teaching skills and give Owen fun experiences and we get outside as often as we can.  But, especially as I'm slowing down these days, many mornings you can find this scene while I try and fit in some reading or cleaning or just sitting:
I thought you might just want to see a few things we've done over the last month so you can steal them and use them with your kiddos.  Pinterest has been a great inspiration when I draw a blank.  These first 2 were favorites in my classroom.  

Playing with noodles.  We've done this many days.  Sometimes "building" with trucks.  Sometimes cooking with measuring cups, bowls, and water:
Cardboard boxes.  Can't beat them.  We put in blankets and read books.  Pretend we're flying.  Or just color like these pictures show:
This wasn't as successful as I hoped it would be, but we'll definitely try it again.  I just took what I would normally fix him for lunch, and put it in an ice cube tray.  He did have fun, but I was hoping for more vegetable consumption.  No such luck. :)
We picked up a set of finger paints at the dollar store and finally broke them out.  The paint in the bag idea is the one linked in the source.  Owen wasn't that impressed .  So we just broke out some paper and finger painted. 
We like to get out of the house and play with someone else's toys.  We go to All Things Kids where the trucks aren't in boxes.  We head to the playground at the mall or FCC.  This is the train table at Toys R Us. 
Bath tub fun.  I strip him down and put him in the tub with shaving cream and let him go to town.  Or this picture was painting with colored bubble bath I made:
Hope that gives you a few ideas.  What are some of your favorite indoor winter activities?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Owen is 20 months! (well, now 20.5)

This post could have also held the title, "It was the best of times and the worst of times." But I'll get into that in a bit. :)

In general, Owen is an absolute BLAST these days!  At about 19 1/2 months, his vocabulary just exploded.  It felt like literally overnight, he learned 50 new words.  He finally said dada and made William's life complete. :)  I tried to write down all the new words he was saying, but I finally gave up.  His favorite words are apple, moon, poop, burp, up, help, and naming animal noises.  He likes to repeat the names of people in his family and he LOVES to name his colors.  He can correctly identify and say blue, yellow, green, purple, green, and red ("ro").  Pink, brown, black, and white he can identify but not say.  And now when we're counting to 10, he correctly places and says 2, 6, 8, 9, and 10!  Aww, I love bragging on my little guy.  This year is going to be super fun getting to do more and more activities with him!  Here's 2 short videos on counting and colors.

(Please ignore the yogurt all over his face.  I also had some juice and decided the night he was wearing no bib and a white onesie would be an ok time to let him drink from a cup by himself.  Oops, ruined that onesie for sure.)

Owen has definitely become a little pickier when it comes to eating vegetables and meat these days.  There are things he definitely doesn't like.  What kid doesn't like chicken nuggets?! So I'm just having to get smarter about pureeing them and getting them into other things.  But overall, he still eats pretty well.  He loves dairy of all kinds: milk, cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese and will scarf down any kind of fruit all day long!
He currently spends his play time playing with little match box cars.  Loves them. I found a little people garage at All Things Kids and he adores sending them down the ramp or pushing them on the tile.  He also loves his Thomas Trains that he got for Christmas.  He still could spend hours reading (aww) and likes throwing balls.  We try to play around on the piano every few days to get him used to sitting up and "playing."  He likes to look at the music and then plunk some notes, so he's getting it a little bit!  He enjoys coloring and can now draw an O for Owen!!
I still don't have a great sleeper.  He did better for a couple months, but is now back to getting up sevearl times at night.  We've gotten lazy and William just gets him, puts him in bed with me and then goes to sleep in the guest room.  Seeing how much Owen moves around, it's a no wonder he wakes himself up all the time.  We're working on some kind of plan here soon since I don't want to sleep with 2 babies in a couple months!  A month or 2 ago, Owen also attached himself to a stuffed animal that was in his room.  He will not sleep without Leo the Lion now.  I actually got it when I was pregnant with him and we were in Texas.  I had just spent the day in the ER because I was bleeding and scared I was losing him.  We went shopping later that week and I got him the lion because he was just too adorable.
The hard times
I think we've entered toddler land.  Owen had figured out he has a will and is very much asserting it.  It mostly comes out when getting dressed.  He hates getting his diaper changed and getting dressed after bath time is torture.  You should see the song and dance William and I have tried.  Distraction with books, youtube videos, singing, you name it.  Sometimes it works.  Most of time, we just avoid the kicking feet and try to get him dressed as quickly as possible.  He will also throw a fit now when he doesn't get something he wants, namely a snack when it's too close to dinner, when it's time to leave the park or library, or just gets told no in general.  William and I are gearing up for being on the same page about some discipline techniques!

But all in all, he is such a delight!  It's been so fun seeing some of the things we've done since day 1 start to actually click with him.  He loves saying amen at the end of prayers and enjoys reading his Bible stories and praying before bedtime.  He also knows the songs we always sing before bedtime.  I love that he is still a cuddler and loves to snuggle with his mama.  I'm cherishing these last 9 weeks before I have to give him divided time.
Some pictures:
we finally had enough snow to go out and play
but the weather has mostly been fabulous - lots of winter park time!
he LOVES his kitty!
2 favorites - books and trucks
He loves this toy at the library.  We've been going to Tuesday toddler story time.
enjoying a snack at Great Harvest Bread Co
playing in Ellie's toy box as I cleaned her room
fever day - we were "cooling off"
And here's a little video from that day.  He loves to make videos for Aunt Jenna:

And one more random video. He loves to make "snow angels" on the carpet:


Sunday, February 19, 2012

the 'stache bash

The title of this post could have also been:
- I slept!
- Happy Birthday William
- Wait, he's a porn star?

But wait, I'm getting ahead of myself, aren't I? Let me back up. Yesterday, my hubby marked a big milestone in his life. He turned 40!  A friendly reminder that I did marry someone 9 years older then myself. :) Even though he is not a huge party person, I knew I had to make a semi big deal of his big day. So I secretly planned a couple big events for this weekend. After lunch on Friday, Owen and I set off for Peoria. My sister said this may have been a bit OCD to pack his clothes this way, but really I was just trying to make it easy on my mom.
I said goodbye and booked it back to Champaign. I got home a little after William who was expecting me to have Owen and the babysitter. But surprise, we were kid free all weekend.  We headed out to Desthil to use a giftcard (thanks Trish and Chrissy).  It was a popular place and we saw multiple people we knew.  I had a big, yummy burger and they even gave William a free birthday dessert.  Then, we got all crazy and went home to watch a movie and go to bed.  It was pretty amazing to get a full nights sleep.  Well, minus the getting up to pee.  While William knew we were going to do something on Saturday, he didn't know what.  I admit to putting him to work cleaning and setting up tables.  Little did he know a month ago, I sent out these babies to invite some friends to his 'stache bash (ordered from here).
Although I should have spent the day enjoying being childless, I have this slight problem about going overboard with parties. So I spent most of Saturday getting ready for our guests. I kicked William out for a few hours so I could at least put up a few decorations as a surprise.  Here's a little breakdown of what the party included.  Jenna would shake her head at my pictures.  It was dark with my bad camera and of course, I missed several important things.  
I stuck with red, black, and white as our color themes.  Of course, I didn't get a picture of the main table once it had food on it.  But here was the banner that went above it.  Ignore the ugly curtains.  My mom and I are in process of making new ones!  Above the fireplace, I made a banner of mustache names such at lip spinach, cookie duster, and soup strainer and accompanying pictures.  There's a simple printable version here.
The main table had cupcake trays that I made by covering cardboard with ribbon and scrapbook paper and placing them on top of a covered soup can.  Can you say free? :)  The table also help the mustaches on sticks, stick on mustaches, and little favors of Wolly Willys.  Remember these from when we were little?  
I made a "wet your whiskers" sign for the drink counter.
Of course, we had to have some pictures of the adorable birthday boy.
And the balloons sporting their mustaches:
I kept the menu pretty simple with a mexican dip, fruit, veggies, and lots of drinks.  A few highlights were the chocolate lollipops.  I ordered molds for chocolate and got a great bag of chocolate from Hobby Lobby (hello 40% coupon).  These took a few days to make since I only had 4 slots in the mold.  But they were yummy!
The drink hit of the night was my sangria. I had never made this before, but it was great!  It does have to be made a day ahead of time to all the flavors can mix.
We of course had to have red velvet cupcakes which are William's favorite.
And last, mustache cookies.  I made sugar cookies and cut them out as circles.  Then I just cut the circles into a ying-yang shape and then put the 2 halfs together to make a mustache shape.
So what's a party without some good old fashioned games?  Well, that's what I thought at least, but now I'm wondering if I should have spared myself the embarrassment. :)  The first game was simple and had no problems.  Pin the Mustache on Burt Reynolds and I found the whole printable game here.  4 of the guys got really into it and Josh took home the prize!

And then there was the Name that 'Stache game.  I got the idea here.  I took pictures from a collection of famous mustaches here and had people guess who the people were by just seeing their mustaches.  While some people were working hard on trying to figure it out, someone came up and asked if I had put a porn star on the game.  Aghast, I said of course not!  But then I realized that there was one person that I didn't really know that I had put on there.  He had a great mustache, so I thought someone would know who he was.  Well, most everyone did.  And obviously, I lead a sheltered life.  Note to anyone who makes this game: don't put Ron Jeremy on there.  *insert lots of blushing*
these ladies worked together to win the game
The winners of the games took home a bouquet of suckers and Walmart giftcards.
The People and 'Staches (more pictures on facebook)
the birthday boy, me (and Ellie)
nice eyebrows Jeff
Becca and Josh
Mike and Amy
Mags looking good with a stache
Mike and Julie
Stephanie and Mike
And that's a wrap.  We went and picked up Owen today in Peoria and stayed for church.  He had an awesome weekend with my parents and I hope William had a great time being celebrated.  I love you sweetie.  Happy 40th Birthday!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...