Friday, December 17, 2010

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

We will return to your regularly scheduled program in 2011...

until then, here are some pictures of what we've been up to in December.  It's been busy, fun, and exciting.  I can't believe Christmas is next week already!  I just sent out my Christmas cards today...and that is why I won't be blogging regularly until the new year.  Yeah right...even then I probably won't.  Merry Christmas!

Our freshly cut Christmas tree

The stockings were hung...

Ella's preschool concert (she's in the far bottom left)

Cutting down the was so cold!

Our church Christmas Pagent

I won a free weekend at a local hotel, waterpark included!

I think he looks so funny in this picture!

Kidsclub bowling adventure!

Who knew they had ramps for little kids?  I'd like to use one of those!

Kidsclub Christmas Party, cookie decorating

Ella's creation

Ella did not want to sit on Santa's lap

Surprisingly, Nathan did

Christmas present from my parents...our appliances now all match!

When I won that free hotel weekend, we got free tickets to see "My Son Pinocchio."

Ella's last dance class for the season

Talk to you in 2011!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Wilderness (which will come to describe several topics in this post)

Last weekend we ventured as a family to the Wilderness Territory in the Wisconsin Dells.  This place was incredible, and a bit overwhelming.  We got a great deal for a two-night stay, which included passes to the several indoor waterparks located right at the resort.  The kids had a great time, but weren't as adventurous as they were when we went to Blue Harbor with my parents.  Probably because this place was ten times bigger and over-stimulating for them!  We all slept in one hotel room, which proved to be a bit challenging, and Nathan got sick on our last night...high fever and vomitting.  But as you can see, fun was had by all!

Last Monday, we hosted an event for our Newcomers Kidsclub.  This is the 2nd topic that I will call a "wilderness."  We had probably 20 kids under the age of 6 running around our house, and around 10 adults.  It was chaos, but it went surprisingly well!  The kids drew on templates which I sent in to a company, and in a few weeks will magically be returned as plates.  We use a company called Makit.  We had to open up our sunporch, which is definately NOT a 4 seasons room, but we had some heaters going...otherwise, I'm not sure that we would've had enough space.  The kids had a blast on the trampoline, so it was probably a good thing that we did open up the sun porch!

And finally, our 3rd "wilderness" adventure...we had our two nephews over for a sleepover this past weekend, and it was just that...WILD!  The cousins always have a blast playing together, and Nathan wants so badly to be a part of the action.  We attempted to have him sleep with the "big kids" but it didn't last long.  Oh well, maybe next time.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Is it too late to blog about Halloween???

It happened again...a blogging rut.  I'm digging my way out...slowly but surely.  This will be short and sweet, just to get my feet wet again. 

We have been busy!  So many Halloween festivities!  My Kidsclub partner-in-crime, Anne, and I planned and executed a Halloween party for the Newcomers group that we belong to.  Look at all the kids that came!

It was chaotic, but that was to be expected!  All the kids had a blast.  It definitely helps that Anne is an elementary teacher by background.  She has the best ideas for crafts!  Here's a picture of Nathan and Anne's daughter Addison...Nathan wasn't quite ready to get into his costume yet.  Love the look...don't you?

Now that the Halloween party is done, we are now in the beginning stages of planning the Kidsclub Christmas party...and, since I'm the Vice President of Newcomers, I also have the responsibility of planning the adult Christmas party.  Luckily, I have a lot of people stepping up to form a planning committee with me.  I have met so many great people in this club.  I really enjoy being a part of it!

Round two of Halloween...

Ella was "Silver Mist" from the Tinkerbell movies.  I wouldn't have known that.  I only hear parts of movies while I drive in the van...I never actually see what my kids are watching.  Is that bad???  We went trick-or-treating with our friends Jodi and Matt and their two boys who also live in New Berlin.  This was the first year that we actually went out with other people and the first year that Ella really seemed to get into it.  And Joe and I have enjoyed the candy.  Thank you Ella!  Nathan mostly sat in the wagon and ate suckers.  He got out a few times and went up to some houses with me.

Halloween weekend was also special because my Auntie Anne and Uncle Bob came for a visit from Michigan.  They stayed with my parents and got to see their house, and our house, for the first time!  My cousin Ben drove in with them and we were able to visit with him for a few hours before a local friend of his picked up him and they both drove to Chicago.  I was so happy to see Ben since he'll be on his way to South Korea to teach English for a year.  He's such an adventurous person.  Ella had a great time playing Barbies with my Uncle Bob. :)

Ella is no longer at Miss Linda's for daycare.  She was the only "big kid" there, since all of her friends left for Kindergarten in September.  She just wasn't adjusting well, so we made the decision to move her to the childcare at the church where she attends preschool on Mondays and Wednesday afternoons.  So far, she seems to like it.  And Nathan is doing great at Miss Linda's without Ella also.  He's able to interact more with the other kids.  With Ella there, she was constantly pulling him away and only wanting to play with him.  Hopefully this will be a good change for everyone!

Nathan is becoming so independent.  His favorite new phrase is, "I do it."  He wants to do everything that Ella does and repeats everything that we say.  (Gotta be careful!)

I'm in the process of finding a medication to help prevent migraines.  I've been on one called Topamax since May, which wasn't helping at all, so just this week I started an additional medication called Nortriptyline, to be taken as well as the Topamax.  I'm just hoping that something will work.  It's getting so frustrating and I'm very discouraged at times.  Ugh.  I just want to be migraine-free!

Well, that about sums it up for now.  We have so many fun and exciting things coming up and I'll be sure to keep everyone updated.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pumpkin Patch and Birthday Bash!

Last Friday we met our friends from our Newcomers Kidsclub group at this great place right up the street from our house:

The kids had so much fun playing games, feeding goats, and picking out pumpkins. (Oh, and posing for pictures!)

The kids even got to walk through a corn maze.  It was a great family-run farm, right in our own town.

We celebrated Nathan's 2nd birthday on Saturday.  Since he is currently obsessed with Thomas the Train, we chose that as the theme.

And here's a picture of the same cake, after everyone had been served a piece, and I told Ella she couldn't have a 2nd piece.

Notice the perfect handprint?  Nathan didn't care, he was too involved with eating his cake and ice cream!

Nathan and Ella both got to hold baby Jaelyn and they were thrilled!

We're pretty sure he had a good time at his birthday party!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My Baby Boy Turns Two

Ask Nathan how old he is, and he will proudly tell you that he is, "Five!"  I'm not sure why, but he has decided that he is five years old, not two.  And don't try and tell him otherwise, because he will get very angry, and then very high-pitched in nature.

Nathan is my little comedian.  He makes me smile and laugh out loud every single day.  He brings so much joy into my life.  He has a big heart and says, "Luf you," and "Big hug."  Or, if I'm singing in the car, he might just yell at me, "Stop it!."  Oh well...

He runs everywhere and when he stops, he fininshes off with a little jump.  He loves to jump on the trampoline and play in the sandbox.  He tries to do everything that Ella does and wishes that he could stay at Preschool, just like his big sister.

I can't believe it's been two years since the nurse pulled the emergency cord and called for any available doctor to come deliver this little boy...he was just ready to come into this world!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Straight No Chaser

No, it's not how I take my drink, it's the name of an a capella group Joe and I saw in concert last night.  They got their start as a college group at Indiana University and then continued after they all graduated.  They wound up on Youtube and Atlantic Records discovered them.  They are truely amazing.  You really should check out Straight No Chaser!

This video is a little long, but it is so worth it!

Switching topics, Nathan had to be taken to urgent care over the weekend.  It happened on the one Saturday I had to work, of course.  Nathan was having trouble breathing and just sounded horrible.  Turns out he had croup...again.  He's had it a few times before, usually in the winter.  I guess he's just starting early!  So, he's on antibiotics and steriods.  He doesn't really act sick, he just sounds sick.  Hopefully this isn't a preview of how this fall and winter is going to be.

Ella is doing great at preschool.  She loves it and always asks if it is a preschool day.  Today at the park I was telling Nathan that after lunch we would take Ella to preschool and that he would have to take a nap.  Ella pipes up, "But you're gonna have so much more fun than me Nathan, all I get to do is learn."  She was trying to make him feel better since he always wants to stay when we drop her off. 

I am loving the Fall weather...however, I'm *this close* to turning on the heat.  It's chilly in the morning!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Happy 4th Birthday Ella!

4 years ago today, at 10:57am, Ella Charlotte Dietrich was born.  What a joy she is!  I am so excited to see what this new year brings for her.  I'm having trouble finding the right words at the moment.  I think there are just too many!  Ella is smart and creative, funny and kind, daring and curious, energenic and loving.  She has a big heart and tries to protect her brother...or beat him up, depending on her mood.  Happy Birthday my sweet Ella.  I love you so much!

A bit of a lengthy slideshow of Ella's life up until now.  I posted this last year, but I added some pictures from this past year.  Hope you enjoy it!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Ella's Big Birthday Weekend

Ella turns 4 on September 22nd, so we celebrated this past weekend.  This was the first year that we threw a "friend" party for her.  So on Saturday, at 9:00am (I know, early, but WAY CHEAPER!) twelve children, ranging in ages between 3 and 5 years old, joined us at Pump It Up.  It was very organized and all the kids seemed to enjoy themselves.  They bounced and played for an hour, and then moved into the party room for cake and presents.  Ella did a great job with thanking everyone and using her manners.  I was very proud of her.

 The fun continued on Sunday with Ella's family birthday party.  I tried my hand at making her cake this year, and I think it came out pretty well.  I just used cupcakes and reused the Princess figurines from the store-made cake.

A funny conversation took place between Ella and my mom (Gigi):
Ella: What did YOU get me today?
Gigi: Well, remember, we got you that trampoline as an early birthday present.
Ella:  No, I mean, what did you get me TODAY?
Gigi:  Well, we gave you money to put towards your college fund.  I know you don't know what that means right now.
Ella: But I didn't want THAT!

Someday she will appreciate her college education, partially funded by her Gigi and Papa!

We managed to get a group shot of the cousins, plus Ella and Nathan's sorta-cousin, Jackson, as Ella calls him.

We were so happy that "Uncle" Paul and Jackson made the trip, even though Auntie April just had baby Jaelyn on the 14th!  Nate was happy to play with his buddy!

And finally, Joe and I snuck away this afternoon to go and meet baby Jaelyn.  She is the most precious little peanut.  So tiny and cute.  I got my baby fix for a while, but I'll need to hold her again soon, that's for sure!  I am so happy for Paul, April and Jackson!