27 February 2011

The BOY is 18 Months Old







Woozers, time is flying! Phillip is now 18 months old as of February 25th. Our little Phillip is one jolly fellow. Since his first birthday these are some of his accomplishments and traits:

weighs 25 lbs
can walk/run
is still fascinated with the bathroom (brushing teeth, cleans the potty with anything he can find, loves baths, washing hands, squirting beauty products, etc)
Can say mommy, daddy, Amelia, Ella, ba-ba, five, monkey, shoe, coat, no, snack, etc
He gets what he wants/needs by pointing, grunting, and stomping around
Loves to push chairs around and see what is going on
Is quite the reader, he can imitate a sheep sound, monkey call, and a roar. He refuses to try any other noises at this time
Loves him some good food
Sleeps pretty well
Loves to play with Amelia, recently learned how to hit her back
Can imitate a gorilla
Acts manly whenever Justin comes home
Loves to wear his coat and be outside digging in the dirt
Tries to dance with Justin's grace and rhythm
Makes silly faces
Grew 8 lovely teeth, working on his molars
Has cute chubby hands and feet
Waves bye-bye and blows kisses that sound more like slapping his face
Throws away his diapers...and a lot of other items
Nursery eligible!!! He did very well last week and this week, only crying 15 minutes or less. YES!

**on another note:
I enjoyed a wonderful Friday and Saturday. Alison watched my kiddos for a couple hours on Friday while I went VT. The snow was super slick so getting out to Potter was a little adventure. Megan's little daughter, Stella, knows the proper names for many dinosaurs and animals. She wants to be a paleontologist when she grows up...yah...she is FOUR.

Saturday I had a Stake Primary training in Cheyenne. Justin stayed home with the kids from 9:30 am until 6:15 pm! He said they had fun eating at McD's, browsing Cabela's, and doing the laundry. Ella came over for the last half of the day since Alison also had a stake meeting. I rode with Becky, our Primary President. We did a little shopping at a kid's consignment store, Michael's, and Hobby Lobby. The meeting turned out to be a lovely luncheon. All the ladies were treated with yummy soups and bread bowls, an amazing salad, and cream puffs. The presidencies were invited to share a favorite scripture and part of our vision for this year. This was the first time I left Justin with the kids for more than an hour or two since before Phillip was born. I feel recharged to have some me/adult time once in a while.

**the kids slept MUCH better this week. I feel almost normal. Both kids slept through the night twice and the other nights only woke up 1-2 times. Ahhhh, what a good night of sleep can do.

25 February 2011

Pining for Spring





I had an overpowering desire for spring this week. Soooo?! I made 20 new flowery headbands/clips. Too bad I don't have a cutie girl baby coming! I am selling most of these and keeping the rest for my photography prop closet. Amelia helped me choose colors, buttons, and combinations. She is turning into a creative wealth! Can't wait to see some of these flowers put to use. Some have already graced my hats this week. Too happy to pass over. My hands/fingers are now totally numb. It is the strangest feeling to know something is in my hand but not feel it. Pretty much anything I do hurts so I decided to just crochet, sew, clutch things in my hand, etc because the boring alternative is driving my crazy. I ran a needle through my middle finger on accident and could not feel a thing. Making all the flowers with hot glue was suddenly appealing since my fingers can't feel anything. Pain is a green light, RIGHT DAD?!

Monday was a bit of a let down once Catherine and Kate left. I really thought I'd hear them leave at 5:30 am but snoozed/snored through the occasion. Poor Catherine went home without a hug. Dang! Amelia and Kate were so darling together. I focused my attention to sewing Phillip a pair of pants using this tutorial by Dana from Made. She is celebrating the BOY this year! About time! Justin's old yellow knit shirt became a pair of cute pants. I even took the time to match stripes. In between sewing the pants Amelia sewed on some fabric scraps. She can sew a pretty straight seam. I love how the pants pattern has a wide leg, curved waistline, and thick elastic. Now to get some real fabric to make more pants. The yellow pants were a second test run since my first pair last week were sort of embarrassing and now reside in the landfill.


Tuesday evening Justin arrived home with a 2008 Toyota Sienna mini van for us to test drive. The kids luxuriated in the extra room. The adults enjoyed heated seats, a jammin' sound system, and tons of little extras. We took the van on a test run to Walmart for groceries. I really loved the trunk button and auto doors. Once the kids were in bed Justin went into the garage and tested the sound system. I found him rocking out to his iPod at about 60 decibels and thudding base. What did I do? Laugh...then join in the fun. He even played a new Rhianna song I enjoy. Yep...the sound system will be a total loss with kids in the car. I had to giggle over the image of two middle aged folks jammin' in a mini van. The weather on Tuesday was AH-MAZING. It was a little cool but the sun was shining and the breeze was gone. We played outside with Ella for three hours. I actually crocheted the cute little hat Ella is wearing over on Alison's blog while luxuriating in the sun watching the kids play. Phillip made the mental connection of putting on his coat with going outside. The kid practically spent the week wearing his coat staring at the garage or front door.

Alison hosted preschool this week. It was a short week due to President's day. The kids went on a field trip to Safeway with a shopping list, rules, and a dollar. Check out Alison's blog for photos. We also had the new Elder's over for dinner Wednesday evening. I served a delicious sweet and sour chicken over rice dish and a strawberry cake.

Tomorrow I am leaving Justin with the kids all day! Yikes! That feels like a first, wait...it is a first. I have a Primary training meeting in Cheyenne at 11:00, then a little shopping. Should be fun. I am honestly a little excited to see what happens at home.

21 February 2011

Kate Friend




Late Thursday evening Mia's Kate friend from Utah arrived for a weekend visit. Kate's mother is one of my amazing close friends. We enjoyed a girl weekend filled with sewing, chatting up storms, girl dates, and such. Justin and Phillip survived the increase in girly levels. Once Catherine and Kate arrived we let the girls play a little while. Amelia was so excited to have a sleep over in her basement. I set up her Thomas bed next to Kate's cot. The two girls giggled and laughed until Catherine went to bed. We both cracked up whenever we tuned in to their conversations. Once Kate said, "My mom is the fastest!" Amelia responded with, "My mom is the slowest!"

Catherine helped out watching the girls Friday morning for a quick jaunt to the Dr office with Phillip. He developed a nasty bumpy rash all over his back. The Dr said it is most like viral or some allergy. I was totally surprised when Phillip weighed in at 25 lbs. I was positively sure he was closer to 30. Check out his chubby hands in some of the photos above. Right after that I went to help the local photographer with a newborn triplet session. Check out some of the photos here. We totally expected a 4-5 hour session with those babies but were done by noon. Towards the end of the session there was a lot of pooping and peeing going on. It was pretty funny. During nap time Catherine and I started sewing skirts for her girls and an outfit for Mia. my sewing room was rocking and rolling for a couple days. Alison gifted me some fabric for Christmas. I finally ordered some fabric and went to town. Totally in love with her new outfit. It has a vintage, Swiss Miss feel!

Saturday morning I had to get a nap in since Phillip was up half the night and up for the day by 5:30 am. His molars are starting to come in so is not sleeping comfortably. Plus his rash itches! He learned how to remove his shirts so often walks around with a bare torso. We had a nice picnic lunch at the park with the kids. The weather was pretty mild! We had to wear jackets due to a chilly wind. Phillip goes down the really steep twisty slide all by himself. Makes me so nervous! He goes down on his tummy. Amelia got whonked in the eye on the same slide. Justin amused us by talking about geese calls and goose behavior/pedigree. What a nerd.

Phillip recently started calling me, "Mommm-my" and Justin "Dadddd-dy." He says the words almost like a sentence. So fetchin' adorable. We taught him how to pound his chest like an ape. Amelia started saying that things are "stonky." Crack me up. She also loves the DK Eyewitness books lately. We've read entire books on rocks, gems, space, human anatomy, and the water cycle. She is using bigger words and starting to understand harder spatial concepts. I am so proud of my little whipper snappers. I love that Amelia can identify classical music, especially Swan Lake Suite, Sleeping Beauty, and Nutcracker ballet. Our new baby must be growing something fierce. I am SOOOO utterly tired the past two weeks that napping is inevitable.  Only a couple weeks until my third trimester! Yipee! That means spring is coming.

Thanks to Catherine and Kate for the lovely visit. We enjoyed every moment! Amelia can't wait to drive to Utah and see her cousins and Kate friend.

17 February 2011

Case of the Sillies





Last night I about died laughing...twice.

Scenario 1:
setting: kitchen, cleaning out fridge.
I removed the drawers to wash them out. I went to put the drawers back in and guess who was in the fridge? Yep! Phillip. He was pleased as pink punch having found the perfect sitting spot. He even scored a gogurt in the process. Amelia was a little jealous of his ingenuity, she figured out how to squeeze into that small space with Phillip.

Scenario 2:
setting: kitchen floor, cleaning the stove.
I heard a loud squeal from the floor. Turned around to find Phillip stuck inside my stock pot. He had one foot in the pot and the other sticking out near his shoulder. He got out with my help...then got back in. Seeing him stuck inside that tiny pot about pushed me over the edge. Laughing. So funny.

Enjoy some of my purty yellow roses!

We went to the park yesterday to enjoy some amazing weather. Took a little picnic lunch for the kids and spent 90 minutes in the sun, accompanied by only a light breeze. Phillip immediately took to stuffing his diaper with rocks, then moved on to piling dirt on the slides and swings. Of course he was mainly attracted to the dangerous equipment like the merry-go-round and the steep/tall twisty slide. Today?! Winds of 30-100 mph all day long. Shoot! This evening my amazing friend Catherine and daughter Kate are arriving for a weekend visit. We are all very excited. Amelia wants to sleep in her playhouse with Kate.

15 February 2011

Heart Day




Monday was totally exciting! Amelia scored some awesome Valentine's from her friends at preschool. She wore her heart purse around stuffed with Valentine cards. We got up and started making cupcakes to take over to "Daddy's work ladies." This year I made white chocolate cupcakes with fresh strawberry frosting. I am glad we took them all to Justin's work!!! Phillip and I picked up two special balloons for Justin, got Amelia from preschool, and headed to Cabela's. Phillip chose a huge bee balloon. I think it was bigger than he is tall. At the office the kids gave the ladies a fun show, handed out cupcakes, and even danced a little. Phillip wrassled the bee balloon with boyish gusto. We had some lunch at the Pizza Hut buffet, a traditional outing.

The kids and I went home and all took a nap/rest. Lately, I am just exhausted! I cat nap all the time, it is almost embarrassing. Justin was able to come home early-ish from work for a super fancy dinner. I made the potatoes, asparagus, and red raspberry crostata. Justin grilled up the steak and toppings. While we ate dinner everyone explained what they loved about our family members. It was a little silly but super fun. I think this was the first Valentine's Day I really enjoyed. Sharing the love with my husband, daughter, and son made the day special. Amelia's exuberance made up the other part.

***note to self: don't take an adventurous boy into the local furniture store without some serious backup or super strong stroller and seatbelt. Phillip has about finished off our tottering dining room chairs. We are looking for some seriously sturdy chairs. I nearly bought a breakfast nook and bench hoping the kid would not drag the table everywhere.

13 February 2011

Happy Valentine's Day









Did she steal your heart away too? She is too cute! Amelia had a great time posing with her new outfit and heart lolly. Makes my job fun and easy. Teaching her to blow kisses about made me pee my pants. She was hilarious!

Amelia is so ready for Valentine's Day. This afternoon we made little valentines for her preschool friends. She wrote the first letters of everyone's name and her own name. Her lettering is improving everyday! Tomorrow morning we are making cupcakes for Daddy's work ladies. I finally decided to do something different for Valentine's Day. My cousin-in-law Nancy inspired me to make a fancy dinner tomorrow night for Justin and the kids. We will use our china, eat some steak/potatoes/asparagus, and have candle light on the table. Justin sent me tulips for Valentine's day! Thanks sweetie for the breath of spring.


We had sacrament meeting this morning at the Holiday Inn conference center. Amelia was beyond excited to have church at a hotel. Our chapel is still drying out after two additional pipes started to leak. The bishop said there was about an inch of standing water above the carpet line due to a pipe breaking over the primary and YW closets (lucky us). Looks like the disaster relief folks did an excellent job saving the carpet and walls. At this time church should be back in our building on Sunday.

This week I resumed my project to organize my photos on disk and on the external hard drive. After three years I was FINALLY able to get the photos from Amelia's birth off the CD and onto my computer. That was a fun trip back in time. I also noticed how plump Phillip is. He started to fill out around 14 months when I stopped nursing him. I must make skim milk! Once he discovered warm chocolate milk bottles in the morning he started growing. What a delightful, chunky little guy. You just want to scoop him up and eat all his giggles and chubs.

Friday night I hired a babysitter in order to attend the World Wide Leadership Training meeting. It was awesome! I must admit that my ability to focus after four years of dealing with toddler attention spans has affected my ability to focus. After sitting for 10 minutes I was almost asleep and totally zoned out. Still some of the words of our leaders touched my heart. My goal is to read and study the new Church Handbook 2 for both my personal needs, home, and calling.

Last night we hosted a dinner date for three other families in our ward. When we had the Gull family over for dinner last month Alaina and I discussed starting a rotating dinner club within the ward. She got the program off and running the last week or so. Justin stayed home all day to catch up on sleep, playing with the kids, and just being home. I got a free solo trip to Walmart (YES!). I made Milano Bolognaise sauce, homemade pasta, and a raspberry jam crostata. The other folks brought a salad, bread, and beverage. Our evening was enjoyably spent getting to know the Gallego, the Dutton, and Lander families. Amelia, Zane, and Morgan spent most of the time in her new playhouse pretending to play Mom, Dad, and baby. I was so worn out after everyone left I went straight to bed after the kids. My poor feet were twice their normal size.

In the next little while, hopefully weeks, we will have a new major part of our lives! We are finally upgrading to a van. My car cannot hold another carseat. The extra room and planned amenities will be soooooo nice. After saving and planning for a year we will nearly pay for the van in cash. Thanks to tax returns, bonus money, savings, and sheer pluck. Finding a used van in these parts is proving to be a little difficult. Hopefully we can keep business local but it may come down to purchasing a van in Denver or Cheyenne. Hooray!

10 February 2011

Flumpy





Amelia comes up with the most creative words. Her word of the past week is Flumpy. I asked her if flumpy was good or bad...she said it is good, unless it is not good. Tuesday she told one of my beginner pianists that she played like a flumpy elephant. Stinker!

This week is sort of uneventful so far. We had a pretty good snow storm roll through on Tuesday dumping about 6 inches of dry snow. The kids helped me shovel the driveway. Amelia is pretty good at pushing snow around. Phillip's snow boots come almost up to his knees making it super difficult for him to bend and move. He face planted into the snow with his bum stuck in the air and his legs straight, feet planted firmly on the ground. He had snow burn on his cheeks, nose, and forehead. After his 4th face plant he stay in the garage and cried. Amelia is super bummed the snow is too dry for a snowman. Maybe we can try today after warmer temps.

Amelia had a great time in preschool this week. She wanted to take the ultrasound prints to show all her friends the new baby. I took some photos of the ultrasound too...sorry about the crappy quality. The paper is super shiny! She loved showing the "golden baby" pics to her friends. Amelia is super excited about "balentine day." She made a fun noodle & heart necklace and a valentine purse. The kids learned about the letter S.

We started putting hearts on each calendar day until Valentine's day because she kept asking if Valentine's was here yet. Her Valentine's outfit is super cute. My cuz Jessica inspired me to make Amelia a skirt out of my old tee shirts and decorate a cute shirt. Phillip got a new shirt too, not Valentine's inspired but monkey inspired. He loves it! I also made a root beer shirt for baby Kaitlyn, due to be born next week. I guess Charity and Melissa call her Root Beer! Funny!

Phillip now pushes the dining room chairs all over the kitchen area climbing onto the counters and such. My kitchen is usually clean before dinner. After dinner...oh man...it looks like a tornado blew through. At least the dishes are done, the floors swept, and nothing dangerous is on the floor. My house feels messy but it is usually only cluttered due to Mr Man following me around, me following him around trying to clean up. We have quite the cleaning cycle! He learned how to get down the basement stairs a couple weeks ago. He gets on his tummy and scoots a good four feet to the landing then slides super fast down the stairs. Since Justin is gone more than usual Phillip started giving Justin quite then welcome home at lunch. When he first sees Justin, Phillip will growl then do something manly (like push the garbage can, tip something over, stomp, throw something, etc). After his little manly display then Phillip will come say hello to Justin. It is the funniest thing ever. "Me MAN!!...must destroy something to prove my manliness...."

Amelia is becoming very helpful lately. She puts her plate in the sink, puts away her things (when prompted) without a fuss, eats her dinner and tries new foods, and will fetch me things (most of the time). Oh man, I am enjoying some reciprocal assistance once in a while. She always says, "Oh! Thank You, MOM! I love you so much." I really try to praise the good aspects of her behavior then apply small corrections after praise. She seems to respond really well to positive reinforcement (duh). Another major milestone is that Amelia can FINALLY reach the light switches without a chair. She really has to stretch but can manage most of the time. Hooray!!!

02 February 2011

Drum Roll Please....

We are welcoming a BABY BOY!!! 

I was convinced this baby was a girl...like 99% sure. Justin and Amelia also thought I was having a girl. We drove up to Scottsbluff for our ultrasound today. Within a minute we witnessed the telltale sign of our pending baby's gender. Yep! I was a little shocked! Mostly, a little sad not to have another girl to sew cute stuff for. I was planning on whipping up some insanely darling outfits perfect for a newborn girl. Sigh! I am grateful that now I can prepare myself for this new little guy turning 16 months old and the pending change from sweet and cuddly to adventurous and curious. The tech showed us a couple shots of the baby in 3-d. When the machine showed the 3-d images the baby looked golden. Amelia is very excited to have a golden baby boy princess. She really wanted to know how to get a girl princess instead of another prince. Hmmmm? Maybe next time?

Brrrr! It is frigid outside



This is a photo of our mailbox...inside the house. Most of our windows and doors are rimmed with a delicate frosting of white ice. It is so cold! The ultra cold front came in Tuesday. The high was 0 and the low -14 (wind chill dropped the temp to -32). Today the high was 11 degrees and the low was -18 (with wind chill -31). I feel like we are living near the tundra. At least the kids are enjoying licking frost off the windows and mail box.

R is for Rooster, Rocks, Rice, Rainbow, and Rabbit





This week preschool was at our home. The kid's LOVE the week preschool is at their own home. Amelia was beyond excited to have preschool at our home, waking up around 7 am ready to go. Monday we learned about the letter "R" and the color brown. We sang rooster songs, pretended to be a rooster waking up the other farm animals, and reading a fun book about a rooster who lost his crow. I was so excited to include science into preschool with my nerdy rock collection. I have quite an extensive collection! We read a book, measured the rocks, tasted them, observed colors and shapes, and even dipped a couple in water. The kids elected to play with our rice bucket instead of making a craft. We ended with mixing red, blue, and yellow water to make the color brown. Then we ate brown snacks! Chocolate milk, chocolate cookies, and trail mix.

Today we learned about rainbows. The kids made their own rainbows using our magnifying glass and the sun to split out prism light. We talked about the order of the rainbow colors then colored rainbows on plain paper. I found a neat idea to make rainbows with beads, pipe cleaner, and Styrofoam. Toward the end of making the bead rainbows we read "What Makes a Rainbow." A real, live rabbit came to visit our class after the book. Each child got to hold the rabbit a couple times and pet it extensively. The rabbit helped the kids color and decorate their own rings using the pop tops from juice boxes. We had a rainbow of fruit for snack.

I was a little worried about Phillip. This was his first preschool attendance as a mobile destructo-man. I was surprised that the kids had a bigger issue with Phillip than Phillip had being good. I realized the other 4 kids do not have younger siblings so did not know how to deal with a little guy invading personal space. This morning Phillip did get the high chair treatment after spilling all the beads and trying to swallow half of them before I got to him. We had an amazing time!!!