Catch Up

Well, it’s been awhile. So much has happened since we made strawberry jam last summer.

Ethan

We had a baby! Ethan was born on February 19. His delivery was terrible, to be honest- emergency c-section and 5 days in the special care nursery, but he his healthy and happy and we are so thankful! He is such an easy baby. He is content to just sit and watch Sophie play or watch us do whatever it is we are doing. He’s so laid-back! He’s been sleeping pretty well too, can’t complain! He has brought a lot of joy to our family.

Sophie is finally adjusting to having Ethan here. We had done our best to prepare her for big sisterhood before he came, but of course having him really here has taken some getting used to for her. The first few weeks were rough with many tantrums and sassy behavior, but it’s getting better. She has warmed up to him and is a bit more affectionate toward him these days. The other day she declared “Ethan is my best friend!” So, that’s nice to hear 🙂

Here’s a recent one of Ethan in his bumbo seat.

New Job

Still working for SAU, but now I’m on main campus in the Admissions office. I love it! I’m a part time secretary/receptionist. The schedule is absolutely perfect for me & for the family. A great balance of being a working mom & a stay-at-home. The people in this office are so fun, energetic, and kind. I’m so happy to be here!

What’s New With Sophie

Oh Sophie-lou. You big 3 year old, you. Our baby girl is 3. When did that happen?! In March we celebrated the birthdays of Sophie and Steph with a fun joint party.

 

 

The highlight gift was a Bitty Baby from Mimi & Nana.

Age 3 looks good on Sophie. She’s so articulate & has an amazing memory. She’s a smart cookie and is becoming more and more independent. She’s fully potty trained during the day and we’re working on getting rid of her overnight diaper. She does have tantrums and can pour on the whine when she wants to, but overall she’s happy & silly.

Balancing

If I’m honest, I’ve had a pretty hard time adjusting to being a mom of two kids. Ethan is a very easy baby, but Sophie’s rough transition was draining to me. I wish it had been easier for her, but I know that she loves him and when Ethan can do more they will be good buds. I’m feeling so much better with the improvement in the weather & Sophie’s adjustment. It just took a few months to get there.

Kevin and I haven’t had much quality time together though. It’s hard to get away when we don’t have a babysitter in town! Last weekend Steph stayed with the kids for an hour to allow Kevin and I to go on a walk at the trail. It was great to spend some time together  and not have to focus on meeting the needs of our kids. As much as we love spending time together as a family (and we do LOVE that!) it’s nice to talk about anything but the kids sometimes. We’re going to need to be more intentional about having little dates. I can see how married couples can become disconnected from each other in the process of raising children, and we definitely don’t want that! So, we’re learning how to balance parenting and being a couple.

Marching on

It’s been a little hectic lately. We’ve been go-go-going every weekend for months now. It’s all good stuff; visiting grandparents, weekly get-togethers with friends, and long & fun days at mom & dad’s. I’m sure more of that is to come with pool season upon us! Coming up we’ve got another marathon of a weekend. Bible Study in Brighton on Friday night, spending the night for strawberry jam making on Saturday, leaving Sophie there to spend Sat. night while Kev & I come home, only to jet off on Sun. afternoon to Lansing for the U2 concert with Peyton & Bethany. Steph will be bringin Sophie back home on Sunday night and spending the night with her at our house, since we won’t be back until the wee hours. Mimi of course is overjoyed that Sophie gets 2 nights of sleepovers 😀

A few weeks ago we went out to visit Mom’s parents. Grandpa had found (of course) a scooter perfect for Sophie-with 2 small wheels on the back so she can balance better. She also got Grandpa to climb into the boat on two separate visits. I love these pictures of Grandpa, and they will be treasured forever!

Sidenote: I’m mourning the tragic loss of those adorable fishy shorts. They were destroyed in a devastating crayon-in-dryer accident. Despite the valiant efforts of Mom & myself to save them with WD-40, dishsoap, and oxyclean, it was not meant to be. They lived a short, but beautiful life.

 

In the hustle & bustle we seized an opportunity to get some professional pictures taken of our family, and I’m so glad that we did. Check out our beauty.

I’ll have to post the rest when Kev gets our internet at home up & working. He installed an update a few weeks ago that messed up the internet connection on the Mac side, so we were using the internet on the Windows side. But in an attempt to fix the problem (but it didn’t work), he reinstalled the entire operating system but hasn’t put Windows back on, thus…no internet on the computer. Thank goodness we can still access through our iPhones 🙂

Had a soccer game last night and I think I really messed up my achilles tendon on my left ankle. It’s not swollen, but it is so sore. By the end of the game, I was unable to sprint. I did score a pretty fantastic goal though, so the game wasn’t totally awash. Today I’m hobbling around and we have our regularly scheduled weekly game tonight. I’m in for a game of pain, methinks.

Well, time marches on and Sophie is changing. She’s talking in sentences now, and busting out some lines that throw me for a loop. Like this one. Here’s a replay of an interesting conversation I had with her the other day while in Meijer:

Sophie: Chocolate milk! Look, Mama! Chocolate milk!

Me: Yep, there it is. How do you know about chocolate milk? (we never buy it)

Sophie: I drank it while I was in Mommy’s belly.

What?! Where in the world did she come up with that? Truth be told, I did drink a lot of chocolate milk while I was pregnant.  I’m thinking they must have been talking about babies in Mommies’ bellies at daycare or something, but who knows. Kids say funny things and I’m sure this is only the beginning!

Ok…one more:

Tigers Game!

We had so much fun on Saturday at the Tigers game. Here are some lovely pics from the Hockeytown Cafe, where we had dinner, and the game.

Big thanks to Mom and Dad for treating us to the great time!

Squeezed the life outta that weekend. Part 2.

So ironic that it’s almost the weekend again, and I’m not even done talking about last weekend. I’m planning on adding the pictures to this post tomorrow, since they were taken with my Mom’s camera and I’m going there tomorrow.

Saturday

We were up at the crack of dawn to head out to Brighton. Typical Saturday! What made this Saturday special was that we were going to be spending it with Kim and Allison-cousins! Sophie and Allison had a blast in the pool and scooting around the living room. I thought Sophie was a chatterbox, but man, Allison jabbers non-stop! It’s adorable! And they were adorable together! Sophie kept pointing at her and saying “bay-bee”. We laughed because, well, Sophie’s not that much bigger or older than her cousin! They are 5.5 mo. and a few pounds apart.

Kim and I had a great day together. We took a walk to help get Allison down for a nap (Sophie was down for the count in the crib). We ate lunch. We swam. We took a break for Allison’s bottle and then swam some more. Kim declared that we should get together next month, and I definitely agreed. Maybe next time we can hang out at her new pool (it was getting put in last week, and they’re doing the patio this week).

And what was my wonderful husband doing all this time? Why, he was cleaning the van, of course! Kevin took it upon himself to empty, vacuum, dust, and wash the van. What a guy! While we were packing up to go, Mom said to me, “He’s really in husband mode today!” So true, so true.

Saturday was our second, third, and fourth glass of lemonade. Fresh squeezed, sweet, and refreshing.

Squeezed the life outta that weekend. Part 1.

Ours was an on-the-go weekend.

Friday

we got up close and personal with a few giraffes at the Binder Park Zoo.

And their sweet babies, who were a little too short to get the attention (and lettuce treats) of excited zoo-goers.

Sophie traveled in style-in her new Ergo!

Kangaroos, a kookaburra, zebras, ostriches, wolves, emus, wallabies, Mongolian wild horses, vultures, a cheetah, and a bald eagle were the other highlights. What a great morning!

After lunch at Chili’s (one of our favorite spots), we decided to go all out. We decided to continue on to Lake Michigan, which incidently was the purpose of our whole trip, not the zoo. The zoo ended up being a side trip. A wonderful, little somethin extra.

So we also enjoyed the beach! See, here is one of my favorite places. The fresh water was the warmest I have ever felt it.

Sophie had a blast in the sand.

And boy, did it  feel heavenly on my toes!

The water felt heavenly on Sophie’s toes too.

Here’s Sophie’s shout out to our favorite radio station 😛

If Friday were a lemon, we juiced it, iced it, sugared it, shook the hell out of it, slammed it down, and held up our empty glasses with eager anticipation of more.

Panic Attack

Not a real one. But close.

On Saturday we were at the Gienapps’ house. They have a deck coming off their living room, on the second floor. So…a long drop to the bottom if one were to fall. Sophie was happily pushing around her push walker on the deck and I was following close behind. The slats were just a little to wide for my liking. All I could think about was her falling off. It was horrible. I wanted her to play inside. But when I took her inside, I realized that there was dog hair on everything. All over the carpet, everywhere. And there were piles of newspapers, stacks of junk everywhere, glass tables, etc. So…we played on the leather couch (no dog hair). I was SO stressed.

I know this post makes me sound like a freaking psycho but whatever. I did not have a relaxing afternoon. It was all just stress. Stress stress stress. Add in the fact that she desperately needed a nap and was cranky as a result.

My Grandparents, Sophie’s Great Grandparents

In the past week, I’ve had visits with both sets of my grandparents. All seem to be doing well. My mom’s mom was experiencing some back pain, so she was walking with the help of a cane-something I’ve never seen her do before. It was a little bit funny though (even she was laughing!) because she said it didn’t hurt as much to walk backwards. So there she was, scooting around the house backwards with her cane. She cracks me up.

My mom’s dad has always been quite the treasure hunter. And by “treasure hunter”, I mean that he collects things that other people have thrown away. Over the years he’s acquired many bikes this way. Our dining table is one of his finds. Well, recently he found a Little Tykes playhouse for Sophie. He was so excited about it! He powerwashed all of the walls and pieces, and slowly-bit by bit- it is being transported back to my parents’ house for Sophie to play with.

It’s just like this, only the walls are yellow instead of pink.

I took last Wednesday off in order to see my dad’s parents as they were passing through Brighton on their way home to Traverse City. To be honest, I was expecting it to be a very sad experience, as I know that my grandpa’s memory is getting quite bad. However, I was pleasantly surprised. They were both SO excited to see Sophie and to see how much she’s changed since they last saw her (at her birthday party). We had a great afternoon!

We love them.

Sophie enjoyed playing in the grass with the soccer ball. It was such a beautiful day.

That morning Steph and I took Sophie on a run at Kensington. Kensington is one of my favorite parks. It’s wooded, and peaceful, and has a nice big lake. After we finished our run, which turned into a run/walk :), we took Sophie over to the playground and gave her a little pushing on the swings. I wish we had had the camera! Sophie didn’t even crack a smile-she was too busy staring down the boy in the swing next to her! She’s got sass.

follower

Some of you may know this about me. Others may not. But here’s my confession for the world to read: I am a complete and total blog follower. To the max. My blogger reader tells me that I am currently following 65 blogs. That’s a lot! So I thought I’d share some of my favorites with you!

My interests cover a wide range of topics and blog styles, so I’ll try to incorporate a variety for you. Hopefully, you’ll find something new!

API Speaks (Attachment Parenting)

Dispatches from the Island (Jorge Garia’s personal blog)

Enjoying the Small Things (parenting blog with gorgeous photography)

The Lost Diary (detailed run down of each episode of LOST)

Mckmama (parenting/photography/Christianity)

Adorkable Recipes (from Melanie!)

A Year of Crockpotting

lori-for when I’m feeling contemplative

lori times five- both artsy and contemplative

There’s more. Lots  more. This is just a sampling. Enjoy!

What should I do on my day off?

Why, I shall blog of course!

Next to me on my desk is a recent letter from my grandma. She’s old-like 85+ old. I am one of the only people I know that still has all four of my grandparents. And they are all old. Like 85+ old. She writes:

“….dear dear Sophia! The photo booklet is wonderful and we have shown it off to anyone who will look at it too! You did a masterful job on your writings and the completion of it. You must continue to keep us informed on all Sophie’s progress. Is her tooth showing now?”

She wrote this on 1/19. Why haven’t I written back yet? They are SO proud of Sophie, they love to just sit on the couch and watch her play on the floor. Even when she was only a few months old and just laid there looking at toys, they liked to sit around and watch her look at toys. All of my grandparents do this. They are so amazed. I can feel how proud they are of me and my beautiful daughter-how much they love to see us, even if we aren’t really doing anything. So today, I shall write back to my grandma! Unfortunately, I don’t have any good pictures printed out to include, but maybe I’ll take a swing up to Meijer to make a little photo page for them. Yes, I will. Once Sophie is awake from her nap.

My only other plan for the day is getting over to Becky’s at some point to run on the treadmill.

This is a new year.

First, I must a post picture of Sophie and ner new favorite toy-the Fridge Farm! If you’re looking for her, Sophie will be parked in front of the refrigerator-tending to her yellow duck, pink pig, blue sheep, and orange horse!

Well, I go back to work tomorrow. All of us return to our normal schedules. It’s been wonderful having Kevin home so much and we kept Sophie home from daycare 3 out of the 4 days last week. Monday my parents watched her because I had an all-day indoor tournament in Novi and on Wednesday Steph and Mom came out. Kevin didn’t have to work on Thursday so we kept her home with us just because. It’s been great.

We spent New Year’s Day at my parents house, surrounded by family. It was great-we played Settlers (Kim and Bryan had an expansion pack so lots of people could play) and honestly, Kevin was in heaven. A full day of Settlers-yes please! Of course, we had true New Year’s babies this year! Kevin found this “tradition” to be totally strange-but I myself have been known to grace place of the New Year’s baby at the robust age of 5! Here they are!

Me and Sophie, Baby Allison and Kim)

I cannot get over how much of a giant Sophie looks next to little Allison. Of course, Sophie is 5.5 months older so she certainly should be much bigger, but there are very few kids that Sophie is larger than. She’s a tiny peanut! Luckily, we were using our cloth diapers on this day out so the babies could have matching bums. I know, I know, we’re weird. Get over it.

Sophie has been taking off in so many ways! First of all, she’s crawling and pulling up on everything (mostly to her knees, sometimes to her feet.) She responds to directions like “Clap” or “Touch your HAIR” or “Touch your BELLY”. We just taught her belly yesterday. I asked her first thing this morning where her belly was and she patted it. It may sound trivial, but we are rejoicing over every little thing-she’s so smart and is learning so quickly.  I guess she actually qualifies now as a pre-toddler. I’ll blink and she’ll be a pre-teen. Yikes! No blinking.

Kevin and I have never really made any resolutions in the past. But this year, he has resolved to lose 30 lbs and run a marathon (Detroit Marathon). I’m resolving to run 2 Halfs-the Trail Run in Dexter/Pinckney in April and the Detroit Marathon in October. Kev is also planning on running the Trail Run Half. Big goals! I figure if I can find time to train for a 30K with a child under 5 mo. (like I did this past year), then I can certainly do it with a child that is 11+ mo. I start my training the beginning of February. Sophie’s resolutions include learning to walk, talk, eat full solid food meals, and other normal little kid stuff 🙂