Tuesday, September 30, 2014

New Videos.

Ellie practicing for her future on the Food Network. My favorite (which she does not say in this video) is when she tells us something needs to cook for "twenty to seven minutes." Whatever that means.

Adam and I goofing off.

And now, for a flashback, here is Adam singing the clap, clap, clap your hands song many moons ago.
If baby Ellie doesn't melt your insides, you are made of pure ice and steel.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Mother's Little Helper.

Ellie seems so much more grown up lately, as though perhaps we will really truly leave the terrible threes behind before we even pass her fourth birthday. Her big thing lately is wanting to help where ever she can. She loves sorting laundry and putting it in the washer/dryer and starting the machines. She happily sets the table for me at dinner time (the other night when I sat down, she goes "what do you say now that you have a fork?" and I sort of stared at her for a minute because I didn't get what she was after, and then I remembered to say thank you.)

Yesterday was bathroom cleaning day, and she happily scrubbed both toilets for me, and then was in charge of the spray bottle when it came time to mop. She said she couldn't wait to be old enough to mop! Me too kid, me too. Then before bedtime I was running the vacuum and she begged to be able to help. She swears she's big enough to move our monster machine. So of course, I put her to work.

Please check those boots. She has been asking for cowgirl boots for weeks now, ever since I got a pair. She has been happily clomping around the house in my boots, and I told her we could maybe get some for her birthday. But since I knew she needed to try them on, and I wanted her to have her choice of footwear (because she is already a picky pickerton when it comes to her wardrobe choices) we went and picked out a pair yesterday. She is SO thrilled with them, and I love how much she enjoys them.

It was quite touching - when we were leaving Target, I told her that those were part of her birthday present, and she thanked me. I said that she should also make sure to thank her daddy, and when Tim came home for dinner last night, the first thing she did was show him her boots, and the second thing she did was say "thank you for my birthday present daddy!"

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Eighteen Months.

Who is this big, half grown up boy? As of today, he's eighteen months old! We had his well baby today and he's almost 24 pounds and 32.5 inches. Which, I referenced my reference material, and turns out that he's smaller than Ellie was at this age. But not by much. He is also less of an eater than she was/is. I feel like I spend a lot of time standing with him in front of the fridge, asking him to pick something to snack on, and in the end, whatever he chooses he then rejects. HOW DARE YOU CUT UP THAT PEAR FOR ME, DO NOT OPEN THAT YOGURT I DON'T WANT TO EAT IT! But he's growing nicely, so they are not worried. And Tim, for as tall as he is, was only 6'2" when he left for college. I gained the freshman twenty five. Tim grew four inches and got even skinnier. Life is not fair.

Adam continues to have one of the sweetest personalities around, but he's definitely learning how to throw himself a dandy fit, throwing things and throwing himself down on the floor to wail about the injustices in his life. He's not big on imitation or on performing - he has his words that he can say, but he'll rarely parrot back something we ask him to say. The other day I asked him to point to his nose/ears/eyes and for the first time, he actually pointed to them instead of completely ignoring me.

And so busy. Today he managed to open the front door. He took all of the bathing suits out of the bathroom. I found him wandering with a nail clipper. He'll go find my fancy necklaces and put them on. He moves the stool so that he can get his own tooth brush, because he LOVES brushing his teeth. He pulls on Lulu until she bites him and then he yells at her. He only likes to poop right after I put him down for a nap. He climbs on chairs, he stands on couches, any time he can grab a piece of electronics and run with it, he will. He takes out all my tupperware and puts it in the living room, every single day. Sometimes, all he does is follow me around and cry because I won't let him get burnt at the stove. He would like me to hold him most of the time, except when he's tired and then he'd like for me to pick me up so he can immediately cry and try to throw himself out of my arms and on to the floor.

He's such a funny little muffin. He loves to wear his shoes, he loves to wear necklaces, and he likes to dance to the music from Dinosaur Train. Lately, if I try to sing at him, he tells me NO! But we started doing music class again this week and he loved it. Ellie was at preschool when we went and I was amazed at how manageable the class is with only one child! Adam is big on books, especially the recordable story books that he can read himself, and he loves play doh (which he calls dee-doh.) He also likes to bring the iPad to Grizz so he can play the monkey game (which he also calls dee-doh for sticker.) He thinks peekaboo is the best game ever. Basically, he's our best boy ever.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Things Ellie Says.

The other night we were having dinner with Gigi and Grizz, and Gigi left the table to take a phone call.
Ellie: where's Gigi?
Me: She's going to take a phone call. Which is bad manners. We don't take phone calls at the dinner table, and we don't play with our phones at the dinner table.
Ellie: Oh, okay.
[Gigi returns to the table]
Ellie: Gigi, that was rude manners. Going to talk on your phone is bad manners.
Gigi: I'm sorry Ellie.
Ellie: Don't say sorry to me! Say sorry to everyone!

Tim's been working some late hours lately and so we've been calling him to chat before bed most nights. Last night, she told him "Daddy! Guess what?" (and then in a whisper voice) "my breath smells like chocolate because" (now yelling) "GIGI GAVE ME A CHOCOLATE STRIPEY CANDY!"

She also really likes to say "well, so, you know" and also "oh GOSH!"

After the library a few days ago:
Mimi: tell your mommy what you drew.
Ellie: these are the dogs. And this is the dog poop. Don't step in it!

And tonight: Mommy. Once, a long long long long long long long long long long long long long long time ago, when I was two, I watched Pocahontas with Daddy.

So, tonight we stopped by to visit Tim at work and bring a little dessert for the team, to help make their long hours more delicious. We brought our stuff up to the team kitchen, and Tim had to step away to check in with a meeting. No big deal - our friend Phil was there to chaperoned. The second I got Ellie set up with her slice of cake, she announced that she had to go to the bathroom. Phil graciously walked us to the bathroom. On our way out of the restroom, Adam gagged himself with a fork and ralphed a little bit directly onto my foot. We walked back to the kitchen and Ellie promptly knocked her slice of cake onto the floor. Tim came back and I told him what happened and he looked at me like I was crazy. Just another day in the life!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Heat Wave.

What a week! It's lucky we're all still alive. The entire week has been 95-100 degree temperatures. Tim has been working until 11pm most nights, working towards a big deadline. Going to get groceries makes me want to spontaneously combust in the middle of the parking lot. And then double bonus: THE POWER HAS GONE OUT. Tuesday it kicked off around 2, and was down for approximately two hours. The kids couldn't sleep, so we just went over to Gigi's and called it a day. Swam in their pool, had Taco Tuesday and complained about how Grizz refuses to use his air conditioner. Just because the thermostat reads 87 degrees inside the house. That's no biggie! And I couldn't even stomp off to my own house because the power wasn't on! It was frustrating, and sweaty.

And then yesterday, another hot morning, more crazy kids, and then just as I was getting everyone settled for snooze time, the house became suddenly quiet. Farewell, electricity! Thankfully, they both took a good nap, and the house didn't heat up too much during that time. I love that the battery in the thermostat allows me to see how hot this dump is getting, even if I can't turn out a light or save the food in my fridge. I hoped that it was just going to be another two hour outage, but it was not to be. The power was out until 7am this morning. The good news is it was cooler at Gigi's house and since everyone slept a little, my internal rage meter was much lower. Plus we took some scotcheroos over to Tim's office, so the kids got to see their daddy for a minute. He was so pleased that Ellie wanted to see his game in person.

And then, I took them home, having rustled up a head lamp from the trunk of my car (I get it from Grandpa Howie. Always be prepared!) Via headlamp, I got the kids tucked in and just sat in the quiet, reading my book, with the cats fighting to come sit with me. Yes kitties, it's over 80 inside this house, I would love a fur throw. I mean, it wasn't the heat that was miserable, it was the fact that there was no air movement in the house without the fans. No breeze, no help. I eventually had to go and take Adam's jammies off because he was so hot and crabby.

The good news is that we woke up to power this morning. And even though Adam woke himself up by pooping, he didn't try to take his diaper off before I got to him. Today, it's been much smoother sailing. The temperature outside dropped back into the 80s, and the AC is running along at a nice 78.

Plus we went to the mall to tool around. I wanted to try out the backpack leash I bought for Adam, intending to perhaps use in O'Hare next month. I also let Ellie bring her baby Suzie in the doll stroller. We were quite the sight, as you can see.

She started sobbing when I asked her to let Adam push the stroller for a turn, so I told her she could hold his leash, and that pleased her.

You have to be prepared, you guys.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Love, Still an Open Door.

It has been hotter than blazes around here. A hundred degrees, easily. I just run the AC and try not to think about it, and we have been spending a lot of time in Gigi and Grizz's pool (which is nearing the temperature of bath water. Probably will actually be at a low boil by the end of the week.) 

Thankfully, Saturday night it cooled off just a touch - just enough for us to go with our buddies to see Frozen in the park. The girls were so cute! Sara Jo bought them all a bunch of Frozen accessories (because she is SPOILING THEM) and they were so excited to put on all their gear and sing along. The heat wasn't too bad, we had lots of delicious snacks, and even the boys managed to hang tight until the movie was over. It was funny though to watch Adam try to walk on the steep hill, and then fall and roll a few feet. 

Friday, September 12, 2014


My funny little kiddos. I can't believe Ellie is almost four. All of a sudden she's had another growth spurt, both physically and emotionally. I had to clean out almost all of the 3T clothes from her closet last weekend, and mostly buy 5s when I'm shopping, so she'll have a little room to grow (though I am always afraid to buy clothes without her approval, because there's nothing she enjoys more than rejecting things I've carefully selected with her taste in mind.) And emotionally, I feel like she's beginning to leave the terrible threes behind (which as promised, were much worse than the terrible twos.) She understands more, she can wait sometimes, and she's learned some dang manners. She loves being a helper and wants to help me cook and set the table. She's got such spunk and life to her. She loves talking to strangers, telling them about herself, or about a dog she once saw. She just cracks me up. It's also funny to watch her learn social niceties - on the night of Grizz's birthday party she told him "thank you for having me" as we were leaving, and the other day after petting one of our random dog friends she told the owner to have a nice day.

And then there's that other little guy. He knows what he wants, and he's talking more and more, but as Mimi described him, he's a bit of a little mime. He makes his wishes known, for sure! One of my friends described his screaming as like that of a pterodactyl, and it's pretty accurate. He says thank you, and I'm working with him to either say or sign please. The only sign he's mastered is more, and while he definitely shakes his head no, he hasn't figure out how to nod yes. He loves wearing his shoes and walking, but doesn't really like holding my hand, which is why I have purchased a back pack harness (aka toddler leash) for us to use in the O'Hare airport. He's officially gotten all of his teeth, and is dropping to one nap. Becoming a bigger boy every day!

He is also a huge pest. This is what happens when I try to wash dishes with both hands, instead of doing kitchen chores with him on my hip.

And this is what happens during laundry folding.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Happy Birthday Grizz!

We love this crazy guy!

Saturday, September 6, 2014

My Gruesome Twosome.

Now that we have two, it's hard to imagine one without the other.

My little sweetie goofballs.

That creaking noise is my knees!

Just kidding, it's the stroller

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Ellie the Ice Princess.

Ellie was so excited that everyone had off yesterday for Labor Day. No daddy going to work! Vacation for everyone! And then today she informed us all that vacation is over, time to go back to work! And then her follow up question was "what are we doing today?" I reminded her that it was Tuesday and Mimi was coming over, but she asked if maybe today we could go ice skating again. OKAY!

As you can see, she did a GREAT job. Funny how much she has improved over the past year, without having gone ice skating again. I guess being almost four and more coordinated helps. I mean, last time she could barely stand and I dragged her around. This time, as you can see, she did best when left to her own devices. She got her balance going pretty well and really only fell when she stopped paying attention to what she was doing and started paying attention to other people. She even did better on her own versus when she was holding my hands. Plus I did better too - trying to keep a forty pound potato upright is a work out!

Please enjoy that she requested to wear her tutu skirt so she could twirl. And hilarious - after one of her falls, she started crying to me about how her undies were wet, so I took her to the bathroom thinking she'd had an accident. Nope, just confused about the ice melting through to her butt. She's a great one, that little girl. It makes me so proud to see her doing her best and learning a new skill, and it makes me happy beyond words to have her skate over to me and say "I love ice skating with you mommy."