Wednesday, May 27, 2009
When we returned home on Sunday afternoon, we quickly unpacked and waited for our friends Gretchen and Mike to come over for a visit. Gretchen is completing her residency in radiology in North Carolina and her husband Mike works in editing for the show, "Jon and Kate Plus 8." I bet he has LOTS of good gossip! I didn't get a chance to ask him about it though. Darn! They were in town for a wedding and had a little time to stop over. Somewhere along the way, we didn't communicate well, and we ended up having a mini college reunion. It was a nice surprise! Many of my college house-mates came into town for the day, including Kathleen, Katie, Niki, Al A., Al B., Gretchen, and me, Al. M. Yep, there were three Allison's living in the same house. And we all go by "Al." It was a nice day, so we were able to enjoy the patio, and Ella was able to run around. I do not see those girls nearly enough. It's crazy to think how that at one point we were all living under the same roof, and now, only three of us live in the same state! I miss them.
We decided to pack up the kids and head over to the Elm Grove Memorial Day Parade on Monday morning. We actually made it on time, but were confused to see people walking the opposite way. We found a parking spot and started to unload, when a gentleman approached us and said, "You know the parade is cancelled, right? Someone was hit by a train." WHAT?!? Amazingly, no one was killed. You can read the whole story here. So we went home, ran some errands, did some stuff around the house, and went to the parade in downtown Milwaukee. Ella had a blast clapping and waving. She told Joe and I that she wants to be a baton twirler. We'll see Ella...we'll see.
The garden has been planted! I'm attempting to grow squash this year, since I've been making it for Nathan. Ella likes it too. Joe and I do not. I'm also trying to grow peppers, green beans, yellow beans, and cucumbers. I tried to organize the garden a little better this year and put down some pavers to make it easier to get in there once things start to grow. Aunt J bought Ella a "Dora Fairy Garden" and we planted it today. Ella was in awe.
And here is a short video of Nathan, just being cute.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
1) My parents visit
2) My dentist appointment
3) Nathan's new tooth
Hmmm...which should I write about first?
My parents arrived last Thursday and were at our house when I got home from work. A nice meal was waiting for us, which is always a special treat! My mom makes the best "chicken pockets." (Well, actually my Grandma made the best chicken pockets, but my mom has taken over and does a super job!) Joe and I left the kids with my parents so we could sign A TON of papers for our mortgage that we refinanced. We got an awesome rate!
We were brave and decided to go out to dinner, kids included. We survived and actually had a really nice dinner. Nathan sat in a high chair, munching on Baby Mum-Mums and chilling with his new Podee Bottle. I just realized that the name sounds like "Potty Bottle." Oh well. If you live in the Milwaukee area, I highly recommend the Delafield Brew Haus. Good food, good beer, and nice and loud, so taking kids isn't a problem!
My mom made us wonderful meals, my dad helped with some yard work, and they both played hard with the kiddos. It had been a long stretch between our last visit and this one, and luckily, our next visit is in a few short weeks. At that time, I will attempt to drive 6 hours with two small children...by myself. Ahem.
Since Joe had to work late (again) and my three babysitters were unavailable, Liz came over this evening with her two boys, to watch Ella and Nathan while I went to the dentist. I think I had a relatively new hygienist...she was way too gentle!
Speaking of teeth, Nathan has been teething like crazy, and has been cranky for the past few days. It looks like one of his top teeth will be pushing through any minute.
Ella has been sleeping horribly. She cries and tries to manipulate us when we say goodnight. The sticker chart isn't working, so if anyone has any advice, I'll take it. Please! Help me!
Some fun things I'll be posting about in the upcoming weeks:
1) Girl's Weekend in Appleton, WI (this coming weekend...eating, drinking, shopping with my sisters-in-law and mother-in-law, and NO KIDS!)
2) Six Flag Great America on the 31st with our friends Kelly and Tom, from Indiana.
And of course, here are some pictures of my lovely children and company!
Oh yeah, one more thing...on my way to the dentist earlier this evening, I passed a church with this message on their sign:
Monday, May 11, 2009
The hand prints are Nathan's, stapled to pipe cleaner and stuck in a pretty vase. The flower pot has a picture of Ella on it and then she also painted it. I got tears in my eyes when Ella handed it to me and said, "Happy Mother's Day, Mommy."
Ella said to me the other day, "I wish I had a motorcycle." I told her to ask her Daddy. So she did later that night when he got home. She doesn't forget a thing! It's almost scary.
My parents arrive this Thursday for a long weekend visit. I am looking forward to the extra help, and spending time with them, of course! :)
Here are some pictures from the past week or so, when the weather was sunny and warm.
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
But he came around...
The picnic was held at a park overlooking Lake Michigan and it had a wonderful playground for the kids. It was a bit chilly, but that didn't seem to bother the kids at all! (It never does, does it?) Our friends Paul and April, and their 6 month old Jackson, were able to make it to the picnic. Even since they moved from Milwaukee to Appleton, we don't see them nearly enough. We enjoyed our time together, taking way too many pictures of the boys (born only 10 days apart) and seeing if they would both fit into a swing at the same time. They did!
It was nice to spend some time with family and friends, and especially with my little guy, Harry. He and Nate are only 4 months apart, so I hope that they will be good friends growing up.
On Monday, my friend Jessica came over to help me make a plaster mold of Nathan's hand print. I had tried, very unsuccessfully, to complete this task a few weeks ago, but I failed miserably. The project ended up on the floor after Nathan grabbed a handful of plaster, instead of laying his hand down nicely...jeez...does he think he's 6 months old or something??? Luckily, Jessica is an Art Therapist and a genius at these sorts of things. Here's how it turned out:
So what if it looks like my kid is from Star Trek. At least it's not in pieces on the floor!
Wanna know what made Joe completely excited and thrilled this week? No, it's not because I am now officially a graduate from Pole/Lap 1, it's because he purchased FOUR rain barrels! Yippee! So now we have FOUR bright blue barrels around our house to catch the rain and then use the water to shower. Just kidding. To water plants, grass, the garden, etc. I would like to do this to the rain barrels, to make them look like art work, rather than FOUR drums of oil, or something like that. Jessica, Art Therapist and genius, would you like a side-job? :)
Friday, May 1, 2009
Speaking of Dora, her cousin Diego has a pretty neat show as well. I happen to enjoy the music very much, especially when "Rescue Pack" comes on. Click here and get your groove on.
My wrist hurts and I don't know why. I am "borrowing" a splint from work and trying to ice and stretch it, hoping I can just treat it myself...I'm a therapist for God's sake! However, it's getting worse and I think I'm going to have to see a doctor. My guess is that it's an over-use or repetitive motion injury, most likely from carrying Nathan's car seat and holding him in certain positions...probably from my manual breast pump as well.
Ella is doing so well with potty training. In fact, I do believe she is 95% trained during the day. She still wears a diaper at night and probably will for a while. Her behavior sticker chart is working...some days. We decided to try getting 3 stickers in a row, instead of 5. She did get 3 in a row, and got to pick out a prize at the Dollar Store. She picked a plastic baseball and bat. Some nights are better than others, and I think we just need to stick with it and be consistent.
Nathan is doing awesome with sleeping! As a matter of fact, he slept through the night last night. Lately, he'd been getting up consistently around 3:30am to eat, but last night he went to bed by 6:30 with no crying and woke up this morning around 7:00am. Needless to say, I was thrilled!
You may notice on the left hand side, a picture that says, "Praying for Stellan." This will link you to a blog I've been following. It's really an amazing story about this little boy, Nathan's age, but it's also a great blog in general. The woman is an excellent writer and very funny. Check it out!
Last but not least, I've made up my mind to get back on the work-out wagon. I've worked out every day this week, which was my goal, so I'm pretty proud of myself. My goal is to work out 5 out of 7 days a week. And I count pole/lap dancing as a workout. And I graduate from "Pole/Lap 1" next week. I think I've found my calling.